BBQ Master Tri Tip Steak

Beef. Gorgeous and delicious when it’s done right. Tasteless hockey puck when done wrong. Don’t let your meat be a tasteless hockey puck. This tri tip recipe includes a fantastic marinade that produces a flavorful, robust steak, and a grilling hint straight from Gordon Ramsey’s mouth. Well, from his mouth via my TV. Ok…via my computer screen. I don’t have a TV. I watch Master Chef on my monitor. And I love every minute.

BBQ Master Tri Tip Steak - Bakerlady

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Perfectly Juicy Hamburgers

This post is going to upset some people. People like Ron Swanson, who think that a burger should be made of meat…and nothing else. On this one point (and pretty much nothing else…I love you RON!) I disagree. I think that burgers should taste amazing, and be incredibly juicy without serving them mooing on the inside. If it is sacrilegious to mix non-meat items into a burger, I apologize…sort of. I don’t tread lightly on tradition when the result is better tasting food. And these burgers taste ridiculously good. Far surpassing any other I’ve ever had. Ever.

Perfectly Juicy Hamburgers - Bakerlady

We start with nice fatty ground beef. 20% fat. Keep your lean meat far away from these. If you want a lean burger, make it out of rice and veggies. We add bread crumbs, seasonings (garlic, onion, chili powder), some Worcestershire, salt n’ pepper, milk and an egg yolk. Just the yolk. The white is basically water. We don’t need no stinkin’ water in our burger.

Perfectly Juicy Hamburgers - Bakerlady

Mix it all up with your hands, form it into a lump and make like it’s a big old meat pizza. Sliced meat. That could be a thing. Right?

Perfectly Juicy Hamburgers - Bakerlady

Take each portion and make burger softballs. Check for uniform size. There’s a joke here somewhere about team sports…but I’m striking out trying to come up with it. (insert eye roll here)

Perfectly Juicy Hamburgers - Bakerlady

Then we’re going to use a little secret. A mold. You can use a big peanut butter jar lid, or anything that’s a decent size and reasonably round/flat. I use an empty painter’s tape container. Set some plastic wrap down inside (for easy release) and plop one of your softballs in.

Perfectly Juicy Hamburgers - Bakerlady

More plastic on top, then use your favorite rounded measuring cup to smoosh the meat into a flat shape all around the edges.

Perfectly Juicy Hamburgers - Bakerlady

Burger ball becomes burger patty. Awesome.

Perfectly Juicy Hamburgers - Bakerlady

Repeat with remaining balls of meat. I make more than I need, then freeze the rest so I can have delicious homemade patties just as fast as someone else can make a pre-made, store-bought, frozen meat puck. See? Nice and flat and even. This way, when they plump as they cook, they don’t end up rolling off your bun.

Perfectly Juicy Hamburgers - Bakerlady

Hand off the perfectly formed patties to your favorite grill master. Mine goes by the name of Zack. He makes meat look pretty.

Perfectly Juicy Hamburgers - Bakerlady

Top it with your favorite accoutrements.

Perfectly Juicy Hamburgers - Bakerlady

Consume with breathless anticipation of the juicy, gorgeous deliciousness. No mooing. Still incredibly tender and full of flavor. I really did intend to take a picture before I’d wolfed down a giant bite. Really I did. But the meat heaven was calling me. I had to answer.

Perfectly Juicy Hamburgers - Bakerlady

Print Recipe for Perfectly Juicy Hamburgers

Perfectly Juicy Hamburgers
a Bakerlady original

2 pounds ground beef (20% fat…yes, this matters)
1 egg yolk, beaten
3/4 cup dry bread crumbs
3 tablespoons milk
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 pinches of fresh cracked pepper

1. Preheat grill for high heat.
2. In a large bowl, mix the ground beef, egg yolk, bread crumbs, milk, Worcestershire sauce, chili powder, onion powder, pepper, salt and garlic using your hands. Form the mixture into 8 hamburger patties by pressing into a mold.
3. Lightly oil the grill grate. Grill patties 5 minutes per side, or until well done.

Maple Grilled Salmon

Have you ever given up something you love because of someONE you love more? Some people quit smoking, drinking or gambling. Others become a slightly less obsessed sports fan because the knucklehead they are married to just doesn’t understand and can’t get on board. Not that I would know anything about that last one. My experience with sacrifice involves salmon. Delicious, flaky perfectly rich salmon. Oh how I love it. I could eat it just about every day and never grow tired of it. Honestly, it is my most favorite dinner.

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Marvelous Marinade

It’s grilling season! Woo-hoo! This tasty marinade is quick and easy and will turn just about any cut of meat into a tender, flavorful mouth party. I know, it’s supposed to be meatless Monday. And obviously that’s a picture of steak. Be patient.

I love to soak some big chunks of steak and chicken in this glorious saucy goodness and then grill them up as kebabs. Mmmmm. Kebabs. Meat on a stick. Does anyone else hear Liam Neeson saying “Sam! I’ve done chicken kebabs!” in his gorgeous “Love Actually” accent? Sometimes, I wish my name was Sam. Anyone?

It’s also incredibly delicious on veggies. But I only bathe them in the marinade for about 15 minutes. Don’t want them to lose their fresh bright flavor. There. That counts right? Meatless veggies on a stick.

Also, am I the only one who keeps my veggies on different skewers? Maybe it’s because I like crisp veg and if they share a stick & stay on the fire long enough to cook my meat, the mushrooms are mostly just mush and the peppers have lost their pep. And that is just wrong. Veggies get their own stick in my house. You gotta keep em separated.

Great. Now I have scenes from Love Actually & the lyrics of “Keep Em Separated” running thru my head simultaneously. Bet that’s never happened to anyone in the history of the world. Since the movie is about a bunch of people getting together, and the song has pretty much the exact opposite goal.

Speaking of getting people together, have a BBQ, make this marinade and cook up some flavorful moist and marvelous meat. Your friends will love it! So will you! It’s fantastic and delicious! Oh, if you don’t have any teriyaki sauce, no worries – I love that I can use up the little bit that’s left at the bottom of my bottles when making this, but it’s great sans the bottled stuff too.

Marvelous Marinade
adapted from

1 1/2 cups oil
3/4 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1/3 – 1/2 cup red wine vinegar (I use a 1/2 cup measuring cup and fill it almost to the top)
3-4 cloves fresh minced garlic
1/3 cup store-bought teriyaki sauce
1/2 cup honey


  1. Put all ingredients into a blender, food processor or a ziploc bag. Blend, pulse or shake the crazy out of the bag until combined.
  2. This recipe makes 3-1/2 cups of marinade, but may be stored in the refrigerator tightly covered in a glass container for up to 3 weeks.
  3. Pour over your favorite cut of meat for 2-24 hours. Beef, chicken, lamb, pork, venison etc…can be used on almost anything!

Grilled Portobello Mushrooms

You could eat an old shoe with this marinade and it would be delicious. Which is perfect, since that’s how some people think of mushrooms anyway. In my quest to have a meatless meal once a week, I stumbled upon these meaty mushrooms. They would be an awesome substitution for your burger, or sliced up on a salad. I just had them aside some fresh green beans and roasted potatoes. Absolutely delicious.

Obviously mine got a little too much love from the grill. My poor hubby is so used to steaks that the Portobello were a new kind of animal for him.  Hee-hee, a new kind of animal. The insides were still gorgeous and full of flavor though so no complains from me. All those onions and garlic just melt into the mushrooms as the grill. Yum, yum!

Grilled Portobello Mushrooms

  • 3 portobello mushrooms
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons chopped onion
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4 tablespoons balsamic vinegar


  1. Clean mushrooms and remove stems, reserve for other use. Place caps on a plate with the gills up.
  2. In a small bowl, combine the oil, onion, garlic and vinegar. Pour mixture evenly over the mushroom caps and let stand for 1 hour.
  3. Grill over hot grill for 10 minutes. Serve immediately.

Fish Tacos with Cilantro Lime Sour Cream

My first experience with fish tacos was in Maui. My husband and I went to a little dive in Kihei and drank Mai Tais and enjoyed numerous fish tacos. It was bliss. I was hooked (ha-ha-ha) at first bite (ok, I’ll stop now). Since returning from our second honeymoon, I’ve tried recreating the delicious spice and zest of the original tacos I fell in love with, but never quite got it right. Until these. Oh, baby.

First of all, let me calm your fears. Fish tacos are not hard. In fact, they are super simple. And absolutely incredibly delicious. Flaky light fish drenched in a spicy marinade gets grilled up and topped with fresh veggies and a creamy cilantro lime sour cream. I totally forgot to bring the avocado to my mom’s BBQ and these were still gobbled down by everyone I shared with.

The fish is so flavorful with just the right heat. Topped with a cool but BOMB dressing — oooh they are just divine. For a truly Hawaiian experience, I served these with Mai Tais. More on those tomorrow! I highly recommend corn tortillas for these – and, heat them up over the grill! Yuuuuumy!

Fish Tacos with Cilantro Lime Cream
adapted from

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
2 teaspoons lime zest
1 1/2 teaspoons honey
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon seafood seasoning, such as Old Bay™
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper1 teaspoon hot pepper sauce, or to taste
1 pound tilapia fillets, cut into chunks

1 (8 ounce) container sour cream2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
2 teaspoons lime zest
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon seafood seasoning, such as Old Bay™
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
salt and pepper to taste

1 (10 ounce) package tortillas
3 ripe tomatoes, seeded and diced
1 avocado, cubed
1 bunch cilantro, chopped
1 small head cabbage, cored and shredded (or a bag of coleslaw mix)
Salsa (optional)
Shredded cheese (optional)
2 limes, cut in wedges


  1. To make the marinade, whisk together the olive oil, vinegar, lime juice, lime zest, honey, garlic, cumin, chili powder, seafood seasoning, black pepper, and hot sauce in a bowl until blended. Place the tilapia in a shallow dish, and pour the marinade over the fish. Cover, and refrigerate 6 to 8 hours.
  2. To make the dressing, combine the sour cream in a bowl. Stir in the lime juice, lime zest, cumin, chili powder, seafood seasoning. Add salt, and pepper in desired amounts. Cover, and refrigerate until needed.
  3. Preheat an outdoor grill for high heat and lightly oil grate. Set grate 4 inches from the heat.
  4. Remove fish from marinade, drain off any excess and discard marinade. Grill fish pieces until easily flaked with a fork, turning once, about 9 minutes. Or, bake in a 350° oven for 9-11 minutes.
  5. Assemble tacos by placing fish pieces in the center of tortillas with desired amounts of tomatoes, cilantro, and cabbage; drizzle with dressing. To serve, roll up tortillas around fillings, and garnish with lime wedges.
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