Friday, August 13, 2010

Double Double Toil and Trouble

This week's experiment started when Daley sent me a link to this website wherein a mad genius hacked the infamous Double Double Animal Style and figured out how to make it at home. We decided we'd give it a go. Or more accurately, I would since he was working late that night and I at least had the foresight to realize this was going to be time intensive and I should start well before he gets home. Start to finish, this took three and a half hours. Apologies in advance for my crappy photography, which makes this look not nearly as appetizing as the burgers were in real life.

For those of you non west coasters, a Double Double is a double cheeseburger from renowned fast food chain In-N-Out. If you get the burger animal style, it comes with added pickles, grilled onions, and the meat is mustard grilled. We followed the directions as precisely as possible, but deviated in a few (possibly key) areas. Mainly, we did not do the 60/40 meat and our meat was not fresh, never frozen. We used the 85/15 patties that were sitting in our freezer. We did get the thick sliced American cheese from the deli, but we got white American out of habit, so the look is a little different. Also, I'm warning you right now: there is no good picture of the finished product because I accidentally took it with no flash. Sorry :-/

So I started with my favorite topping: the spread. It seemed that on the original site he only made one burger so I assumed his recipe was enough spread for one. As we were making two burgers, and I like extra for my fries, I tripled it.

That's a lot of spread, friends.

The flavor is dead on. I didn't even add the vinegar or sugar like he recommends, just a tiny extra shot of ketchup. The highlight of this for me was that I now know I have a perfect spread recipe for all my delicious fattening topping and dip needs.

Now it's not Animal Style without a ton of grilled onions. As the Burger Lab genius says, these need to be caramelized and grilled into the creamiest of grilled onions. If at any point the contents of your pan still look like onions, you're not finished. They should look like marmalade. These are seven onions all chopped and ready to go:

And these are those same onions after two and a half hours of careful caramelizing and deglazing:

Yes, I know that looks disgusting. But it's because of the crappy photog skills, remember? It tasted like delicious, sugary, onion-y dessert. Plus I used the leftovers to make really good French onion soup from scratch. So it's the gift that keeps on giving.

Now it was time to assemble the deliciously toasted buns with spread, pickles, tomato, and lettuce:

And grill the meat:

Before reading the hack, I had no idea Double Doubles Animal Style were mustard grilled, but apparently it's a key component of the cooking process. So mustard grilled ours were:

After the meat was grilled, we topped one patty with cheese and onions:

Topped it with the other patty and assembled the burger:

Like I said, I know this sucks. But as soon as I realized the flash was off, the whole thing toppled over. We are not going to get jobs at In-N-Out any time soon.

Daley LOVED them! That made the slaving pretty much worth it. I was not so enamored, for many reasons. Mainly, I never order a Double Double and there's a reason for that: I cannot eat that much food. I couldn't finish it. I could barely eat it, to begin with. My jaw just can't unhinge that way (no jokes, I hear you giggling). So I guess for me, the three hours of work just wasn't worth the outcome, generally. Especially considering just how tired I was and had hoped to go to sleep much earlier.

But to look on the bright side: the onions were heaven and the spread is the stuff of dreams. I just have to really work up the energy to ever do this again. It was a toughie.

But that shouldn't stop you from trying and telling me all about it!

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