Meat

It’s no surprise that I work as a line cook for Cracker Barrel (I’ve mentioned it multiple times). Among the many items we serve are hamburgers and steaks. Cracker Barrel won’t allow us to cook rare or medium-rare burgers, but steak is fair game. At one time, we offered a 10-ounce ribeye steak and an 8-ounce sirloin. The sirloin we have now is what is called a “cap steak”. In my opinion, this steak is not as good as the old one.

As I said, steaks are cooked to order to any temperature you want. And I have seen steaks cooked all over the spectrum—everywhere from extra rare to super well done. On multiple occasions, a customer has ordered their steak as rare as possible. Okay, sear the outside a little, about 30 seconds a side, and done. I like my steak rare, but that is way underdone for my liking. Taking a ½” to ¾” thick steak and cooking it for mere seconds, wouldn’t that still be raw in the middle? I guess, to each their own. Let me tell you a little story. If you like your steak well-cooked, you can get it however you want, but know that the person cooking your steak is probably cussing you out and poking fun at your “tire tread”. The cow already died to make your steak, why do you have to kill it all over again? And are you the kind that asks for ketchup, because every last drop of juicy goodness has been cooked out of that dry piece of what once was meat?

The same goes for hamburgers. You can get medium, medium-well or well-done, or even charcoal, if you want. Here again, if you want a well-done burger (or beyond), your cook is cursing you. Meat is not meant to be cooked and obliterated beyond recognition. What kind of cheese do you like for your burger, between the choices of Colby, Monterey Jack and American? If you said American, you nasty as fuck, as well. American “cheese” is like one step away from plastic. It even melts like plastic🤮. Have you ever smelled American slices when they’re warm? I have, and it smells like someone’s dirty gym sock. Yes, it’s gross. I don’t get how anyone will eat a well-done burger with American “cheese”. Then there’s those people who, for some unknown reason, like American in their scrambled eggs.

I have to say the most depressing hamburger I’ve ever made was well-done with American, plain and dry. I almost don’t want to serve that shit. I do, because it’s my job and I get paid for it, but I don’t have to agree with it, or even like it. Please, for the love of the culinary gods, stay away from American fake cheese. The best burger I’ve made was medium (mayo, lettuce, tomato), with Colby cheese (or Jack, either works), bacon and onions, grilled or raw. Borrowing In-N-Out’s slogan, that’s what a hamburger is all about.

Motivational quote for today:

“No matter what your history has been, your destiny is what you create today. What are you going to create?”
– Steve Maraboli, Life, the Truth, and Being Free

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