Cookbook Challenge 50
It is perfect spring weather in Coffs Harbour at the moment so I intended to make the most of this weeks challenge and enjoy a sunset picnic at the beach with a bottle of wine and some nice food.
My mum had also looked ahead at the remaining “Cookbook Challenge” themes and gave me a recipe which showed a lovely Antipasto Cob. So for once in my life I was organized with the recipe for my upcoming theme of “Picnic.”
Then, as I was perusing my favourite food bloggers sites, what do I see staring out at me? The perfect Muff! My cob was really called a muff, and the lovely Connor from “Hold the Beef” had already done the muff to perfection. Seems the layered cob goes by two names, and probably the truest to its origins is the Muffuletta or “muff” for short. Read here for the muff story.
So my dilemma, do I do the muff regardless, or do I change my dish… my problem was, I actually loved the look of Connors muff. That was the dish I wanted to bring to the picnic…
The epiphany which led to the creation of the “Muff Burger” was my three year old daughter’s meltdown when I told her that she couldn’t have hamburgers for breakfast. The only way to stop the tears and get her to pre-school was to promise hamburgers for dinner, and that’s when the light bulb went off in my head. I would make a Muff Burger and Mini Muffs for the kids so they could have the fillings they liked, (meat, cheese and coleslaw).
So here is my Aussi Muff Burger, and yes, I have had no end of fun with the innuendo surrounding the muff. Feel free to continue in the comments section below.
1 Lg Cob
3 large lettuce leaves
1 bunch rocket or endive leaves
8 slices beetroot
1 cup caramalised onion (see recipe)
10 slices Jarlsberg cheese
1 cup coleslaw
Meat Patty Ingredients:
750gm beef mince
250gm lamb mince
1 lg onion (finely chopped)
3 cloves garlic (chopped finely)
1 cup bread crumbs (use the inside of the cob)
1 t/s cumin
1 t/s salt
½ cup tomato paste
1 T/s Parmesan cheese
The meat patty recipe is taken from my “Townsville Greek Festival” cookbook. It is a Greek meatball dish which is just delicious. You will find you will have enough meat leftover to make meatballs to freeze for another meal.
Make the Caramalised Onion per recipe, leave to cool.
Pre-heat the oven to 160 degrees. If your cob isn’t crusty and hard, bake the cob for about ten minutes until it is crisp. Remove from the oven and cut the top of the bread.
Scoop out the insides on the cob, leaving about 1cm of bread to support the filling.
To make the breadcrumbs for the meat patty, place the bread which was removed from inside the cob onto a baking tray. Cook until golden brown and dried out.
Place the bread pieces into a food processor and process until the bread resembles commercial bread crumbs.
In a bowl add all the meat patty ingredients and mix by hand until well combined.
Grease a small round dish which is a similar size to the cob. The meat patty needs to be cooked as one patty and you want it to make one complete layer across the cob.
Push the meat firmly into the dish and bake for about 15-20 mins on 180 degrees. Allow to cool a little.
Because the fillings for my muff are quite moist I started with a layer of lettuces leaves (from my garden) to protect against a soggy bottom.
Next I added a thick layer of coleslaw and spread it evenly over the lettuce.
The following layer was the meat patty which took a little maneuvering to get it in the smallish opening. Once the layer was in place I pushed the fillings down to ensure there were no spaces.
Spread a layer of caramalised onion over the meat. My aim was to alternate between a solid layer and a softer layer for texture and to allow the fillings to compress more easily. I finished with a layer of cheese to protect the top layer of bread from any soggy fillings.
The muff layers were bulging about 2cm beyond the cob. Next I covered the muff in plastic wrap and put a book on top to compress the filling. When I placed the bread lid on the muff I realized that because I had taken the soft bread from the lid as well, I could have added another layer to the muff. You can see in my photos there is a gap between the lid and the last layer.
I served the muff about 2 hours after making it at room temperature. It was moist and delicious and a great picnic food. Much more special than plain burgers! I used tiny dinner rolls for the kids which was an ideal size. Plus the design of the muff means the filling won’t fall out! Win!
There something pretty great about watching your kids running around on the beach as the sun goes down.