Bacon Peanut Butter Burger….what?
I’m not big on planning. My wife hates it, but I’d rather just go and figure out the details on the way. Now, I know things can go wrong, and they often will. But that’s part of experience and how great memories are made.
I wanted a car with great gas mileage, my older SUV was killing me in fuel costs. I was spending just under five hundred dollars a month on gas, and that was just me!! I looked at the Prius and some other well known gas savers, but they wouldn’t really help me knock out all these highway miles. I found out about the diesel Volkswagen Jetta from my brother. 45 mpg highway? I couldn’t get one fast enough. Now, I’ve never had a new car and I don’t know when I’ll take that step, but I wasn’t ready for it yet. I spent weeks searching for the perfect used Jetta, it just had to be a manual. Yeah, that kind of narrowed my search. Used manual diesel Jetta…good luck finding that around here. I was willing to travel a bit to find it. I knew what I wanted, why not get it? Anyway, weeks go by and I can’t find any even close, besides the one 2 hours away that got sold out from under me. Whatever, it happens. So, I start looking a bit farther away. One pops up in Knoxville, TN and another near Raleigh, NC. Hmm…I’ve got family in Raleigh that I haven’t seen in a few years, and they haven’t met my son yet. It’s Friday afternoon, let’s get some stuff together and go tomorrow morning. Turns out my younger sister and her friend want to go on a roadtrip, so they tag along. Some other relatives have a cabin in the foothills of the Appalachian Mounts in North Carolina. They tell me we could stay there if we can make it through.
So, off we go. An hour or so into the drive, my wife decides to call the dealership and find out their hours on Sunday. Who knew most car dealerships in the South aren’t open on Sunday?! I had no idea, never even crossed my mind that they would close. We can’t make it before they close on Saturday, so now what? Things could have gotten bad, but all I could do was laugh. My wife would never let me live this down, “going to plan a little better next time?” I knew she would say. We had two choices. Go back home or just go to the dealership in Knoxville. There was no way I would turn around, that would be absolutely terrible. Who couldn’t use a little vacation anyway. I’m still sorry I didn’t get to go see my relatives, but there will be more chances down the road.
Yeah…check engine light on during the test drive. See ya. I was starting to get discouraged, I really wanted one of those cars. Oh well, vacation only, no new car.
So, we stop at a roadside diner in some little town somewhere outside of Knoxville. They had a 50’s gimmick, stuff all over the wall and relevant names for some of the dishes. The hamburger I got didn’t have a special name, I was thinking about the jalapeno burger, but something else kept drawing me towards it. Why not try something new? I get jalapeno burgers all of the time. Bun, burger. bacon, and peanut butter. That’s what I needed. Something about this doesn’t quite feel right, but it just goes together. After you get past the initial shock and weirdness…it’s perfect! Well I think it is anyway. I’ve received the same response from the more brave folks I’ve managed to talk into trying this. I still haven’t figured out what makes it peanut butter and beef go so well together. I experimented with creamy, crunchy, natural, and organic peanut butter. It really didn’t make a difference in the overall flavor. Next I tried adding more toppings and cheese to the sandwich instead of just bacon. What I found really tripped me out. My favorite combination was a regular cheeseburger with peanut butter on the bun instead of mayonnaise and mustard. So yeah, peanut butter, pickles, onion, tomato, lettuce and cheese all on the same burger. I have no idea why it works and I don’t know if I care to find out why.
- 2 lbs good quality ground chuck
- 8 hamburger buns
- 12 pieces of bacon
- mild cheese
- 1/2 cup peanut butter
- kosher salt
- ground pepper
I like to weigh the meat and split it up into quarter pound pieces. Just eye it if you don’t have a scale. I fry these on a griddle, so I like to get them as flat as possible when pressing them out. Gently form them into rounds and place on a griddle or electric skillet. Cook the bacon and when its almost done, turn on the hear for the beef. Sprinkle the tops with kosher salt and fresh ground pepper. Cook over medium high heat until the edges are beginning to brown, flip them. The cooked side should have some good color on it. While the bacon and hamburgers are cooking, get the topping ready (if you’re using them). Add the cheese and cover. Make sure the cheese isn’t too strong or it will overpower the peanut butter flavors and ruin the mix. When the burgers and bacon are done, remove from pan and wipe out almost all of the fat. Split the buns and place them cut side down and toast. When everything is ready, warm the peanut butter in a small bowl in the microwave for 30-45 seconds or until slightly runny. Generously pour over the burger or spread over the buns. So good…I need one now.
Ok, some of you know how amazing this is, but most have no idea. I know this won’t be for everyone, but if you haven’t tried it, do yourself a favor and try it.
Back to the trip…So we take the only road we can to get to the cabin. It happens to be the famous Tail of the Dragon. Wow, if you drive a bike or sports car, drive this road. It’s amazing. We didn’t have that great of a time on it, because of my wife’s tendency to get carsick and be terrified of taking corners at speed. We were all grating on each other’s nerves by now and I just had to pull over and let her drive. A couple hours later, all was forgiven. The cabin is up on the side of a mountain/hill and overlooks the town below. Absolutely awesome views. We all immediately relaxed and started enjoying ourselves. I don’t know if it’s possible to be in a bad mood up there.
I don’t know why, but he loved playing with this gate
Here ya go Dad!
Breakfast tastes better up here for some reason
1 of 2 creepy Pee-Wee Herman dolls that had terrifying broken voice mechanisms. He loved them though lol
My spot for the duration
Looking out, over the town
I’m a pirate!
Getting the mud and sand to pan for gold!
View from the balcony
View part two
Least awkward of their pics lol
He loves his aunt Al
On our way out, see ya!
So, a few weeks later, I found a car about 10 mins away from my office. No manual transmission, but it was a shiftable automatic. Close enough! I bought it and I absolutely love it. I can get just under 50 mpg if I drive it right, and it’s still fun to drive! Everything turned out in the end and we had an impromptu weekend getaway up in the mountains that nobody will soon forget.