Burger and Tonic

Srira-cha-cha Burger on a pretzel bun, Essex Street new pickles on the side

Sometimes you just need a burger. Might as well make it a good one. Thanks to brother Dave, I’ve got a simple way to kick up the average burger, using that Mother of All Hot Sauces, Sriracha. This Thai-inspired chili sauce is the go-to secret ingredient for many chefs in their own home kitchens, lending a heat and depth of flavor quite unlike any other hot sauce.

Grab a bottle with the rooster on the front, (the deceptively foreign-looking, California-made Huy Fong brand) which is easy to find in the “ethnic foods” aisle at major supermarkets. (We know families where the kids simply call it “Rooster Sauce”). It pairs with endless ingredients—try it on eggs of all stripes, in soups, in mayo to kick up a sandwich, or just a dollop on a square of cheese and cracker.

But back to that burger . . . 

Srira-cha-cha Burger

Into 1 pound ground beef, grate half a red onion, add a couple good squirts of Sriracha sauce, salt and pepper, and shape into patties.

That’s it. Grill, broil, pan fry to your liking.

Enjoy this summer cooler (a variant on gin and tonic) while the burgers cook.

South Brooklyn Ginny

1 ounce gin

¼ ounce St. Germain liqueur

Tonic water

Lime wedge

Pack a tall glass with ice. Pour over the gin and St. Germain. Top off with tonic water. Squeeze lime wedge into drink and stir gently.



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