Happy Labor Day!

I hope you enjoy your Labor Day with a nice cook out and family or friends. We usually grill out burgers on Labor Day, and I came across this recipe for some different burgers, to mix things up a bit. Hope you enjoy them, and please share any great recipes you have, too!

3 Creative Burger Recipes For Labor Day Cookouts

Courtesy of CBS Miami  http://miami.cbslocal.com/top-lists/3-creative-burger-recipes-for-labor-day-cookouts/

Labor Day is the unofficial end of summer, so it’s a great time for some creative cooking on the grill. While Labor Day cookouts and BBQs often include standards like burgers and hotdogs, why not change up your grilling repertoire with some spiced up versions of summertime staples? Here are three tasty and delicious all-American burger recipes for that last official summertime cookout of the season.

Before you light up the grill, there are a few tips to help you prep the best burger meat mixture. First and foremost, don’t use the leanest ground sirloin, because it makes for drier burgers. Ground beef or ground chuck work better  for juicy burgers. When planning for a big party the easiest way to measure out burgers is to remember, six ounces of beef per burger. Always cook beef burgers to at least 160 degrees, and let the meat come to room temperature before cooking it.

Bruschetta Burgers

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Photo Credit Thinkstock

For an Italian twist on a BBQ favorite, add ¼ cup parmesan cheese, a teaspoon of fresh basil, two cloves of minced garlic, and a pinch of salt and pepper to two pounds of ground beef. Shape into patties. Grill the burgers until cooked and top with thick slices of mozzarella cheese and jarred bruschetta mix. Serve on buttery toasted buns.

French Onion Soup Burger

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Onion soup mix isn’t just for potato chip dips. For the best-ever onion burgers, add a packet of dry onion soup mix and a half cup of water to two pounds of ground beef. Mix it all together, shape into patties and grill. Of course, if you want really oniony burgers, you’re not done just there. Toppings like caramelized onions and gooey Swiss cheese will make these burgers melt in your mouth. To make perfect caramelized onions, fry sliced onions (not too thin, so slice pieces about 1/8 inch thick) in a combination of butter and olive oil on medium-low heat. And remember, caramelization takes time, so don’t try to rush the onion frying process.

SoCal Burger Knockoff

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You don’t have to live in California to get a taste of one of the top fastfood restaurant chains in the country. While In-N-Out Burger is found mostly in Southern California, burger lovers from all over the country can create a knockoff version of the chain’s signature burger this Labor Day. The trick to an In-N-Out burger has everything to do with the secret sauce, which has been the chain’s staple since 1948. So, after grilling up a batch of thin beef patties, top each one of with American cheese and serve them on toasted rolls garnished with iceberg lettuce, tomato, pickles and caramelized onions. (In-N-Out Burger puts two thin patties on each bun.) For the finishing touch, top the entire concoction with a big dollop of secret sauce.For sauce, mix together:

  • ¼ Cup mayo
  • 2 Tbsp ketchup
  • 1 Tbsp sweet pickle relish
  • ½ tsp white vinegar

PorktoberQue is Finally Here!

Tonight PorktoberQue kicks off at the Houston County Farm Center in Dothan, Alabama. The farm center is at 1701 E. Cottonwood Rd., and you can buy tickets at the door for just $3 (children 6 and under are free).  Or, you can get in free if you wear Lederhosen or a German outfit. Tonight’s festival is from 5pm- 10pm.

Tonight are the City Commissioners versus the County Commissioners hot wing eating contest (7pm), the corn hole practice rounds (all evening), Bavarian Obstacle course challenge, and of course, live music on two stages.

In the Festhaus (that’s the larger metal building that’s air-conditioned) is our Oktoberfest music and food, plus cold draft beer from Sam Adams Octoberfest. The Polka Dots of Dothan will play all night and there will be a dance floor. Don’t forget, if you buy a beer mug, you get refills for $2.25 each all weekend!

On the outside stage, there are two acts.  At 5:30 is Flip Robinson. He is a young man making his way in the world as a musician. His acoustic versions of songs have earned him a good following with young adults across the Wiregrass.

7:00 Kristan Mikala and the Paradox will play. They are a veritable powerhouse of a band based in Dothan, AL. Known for their engaging and creative interpretations of high-energy rock covers as well as fun, relatable originals, Kristan Mikala and the Paradox brings a party wherever they go. Formed and fronted by a dynamic, award-winning vocalist and songwriter, the band has been performing widely in the Southeast throughout 2014

See you at PorktoberQue tonight, rain or shine!
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PorktoberQue Begins Tomorrow!

Don’t forget, rain or shine PorktoberQue is this weekend! It begins tomorrow at 5pm at the Houston County Farm Center and we hope to see you there. You can look through this site and have most of your questions answered. If you hover your mouse on many of the categories above in the tool bar, there will be a drop down menu with lots of choices and information. Explore the site and find out what’s going on tomorrow at PorktoberQue. You can buy your tickets at the door- just $3 for adults and children 6 and under free. flyer-8.5inx14in-h-front

Free Cooking Class Today At Academy Sports+Outdoors in Dothan

Take a few moments out of your schedule today to take your kids (between the ages of 8-18) to Academy Sports + Outdoors on Montgomery Highway. Between 12:30 and 2:30 students can try out their grilling skills on several grills. Academy has purchased a number of steaks to give to the kids to try out their skills (first come first serve on the steaks). Dothan Country Club Chef du Cuisine, Joe Whaley, will be on hand to assist kids in learning some finer points of grilling. Best of all, this event is FREE courtesy of Academy Sports+Outdoors!
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Kids Que Now FULL

Thanks to everyone who signed up for the Kids Que. We are now out of spaces and are at a full field for the competition. Good luck to all the kids who are participating— you have been mailed a copy of the rules, instructions and tickets. Your space number will be marked on the ground in orange paint, so look for it when you arrive!  Thanks to Academy Sports+Outdoors for sponsoring this event, and thanks to Fatbacks for providing the steaks to the kids for grilling.

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PorktoberQue Package Give Away— Includes Hotel Stay!

We are pleased to partner with our host hotel, the Hilton Garden Inn, to offer a free one night stay on Friday September 26 along with 4 admission tickets and a souvenir beer mug to one lucky winner.  Click the link to get your chances to win this give away! Contest ends 9/20 and winner will be drawn through the Raflecopter automated service and notified with instructions on how to make your hotel reservation. Good Luck!

http://tinyurl.com/o456z9q

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Just a Few Spaces Left

PorktoberQue is filling up! We’ve been out of food vendor spaces now for over a month, and are out of competition BBQ team spaces. As of the moment, we have a couple of spaces left for students interested in participating in the Kids Que, we have a few spots left for teams interested in competing in the Corn Hole tournament, and we have a couple of vendors spaces left (mostly outside) if you are interested in promoting your business or selling your wares.

Please don’t wait any longer if you are interested in these spaces! PorktoberQue is at the end of NEXT WEEK and we are just about out of time, so get your forms in now! Call us at (334) 699-1475 if you would like to sign up via the phone and pay with a credit card.

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Cornhole Tournament Winners Receive Additional Prize

Originally, we thought the Cornhole tournament winners would just receive a trophy and bragging rights. However, due to the generosity of Yates Hobby Shop in Bonifay, FL the winning team will also receive a set of boards for their victory!
Check out Yates here on their Facebook page and make sure you tell them “thanks” for their kindness!
https://www.facebook.com/yateshobbyshop14

Bavarian Themed Festhaus Is More Than Just A Biergarten

In Germany hundreds of years ago, a Biergarten was quite literally an outdoor garden in which to rest and enjoy a mug of beer. Over time Biergartens have evolved and changed to also include indoor areas containing tables and chairs allowing patrons to consume their beverage of choice. PorktoberQue has taken it a step further and created an entertainment and shopping venue inside the air-conditioned Biergarten.

Besides ice-cold draft beers, featuring the Sam Adams Octoberfest, there is scheduled to be a bratwurst vendor and a hot pretzel inside the Biergarten, as well as numerous arts, crafts and merchandise vendors. There will be dozens of tables and hundreds of chairs on which patrons can rest, relax and enjoy the show on the stage inside. The Biergarten stage features all of our authentic Oktoberfest-style music, including the house polka band, The Polka Dots.

The Polka Dots will be playing on Friday, September 26th, from 5:15-6:45 and again from 8:15 until 9:30. They return Saturday, the 27th, to play the opening set at 10am and one final set from 12:30-1:30 pm. The Polka Dots play numerous polkas that you will remember from years gone past, including “The Pennsylvania Polka”, “The Too Fat Polka”, and our favorite, “The Beer Barrel Polka”, plus many other tunes. Friday at 7 pm and Saturday at 11:30, 1:30 and 3:30, the Reptile Discovery Program presented by Bruce Shwedick will give an up close and personal view of snakes, pythons, iguanas, tortoises and other reptiles. Children love this safe and friendly show, so bring your camera and enjoy the reptiles on the Biergarten stage.

Saturday, September 27th, we have invited authentic German musician Beatrice Fulghum to come and play her accordion on the Biergarten stage from 2:45- 3:30 and again from 4:45 until we close the Biergarten that evening. Beatrice has had a permanent gig playing the Hofbrau Haus in Pier Park (Panama City Beach) the past several years, when she is not back in Germany performing, and she delights crowds wherever she goes. The Biergarten is open Friday, September 26, from 5-10 pm and again Saturday, September 27, from 10am-7pm. The Biergarten is a family friendly place, and we encourage the kids to come in, enjoy a place to sit and cool off in the air-conditioning with their parents and to see the Reptile Discovery Program. Many times the bands play songs like “The Chicken Dance” and other fun songs, and kids are encouraged to get up and dance!

For more information on PorktoberQue, The Polka Dots or the Reptile Discovery Program, call (334) 699-1475. To see a list of vendors participating, visit PorktoberQue.com and click on things to do, scrolling down to “vendors and booths to visit”. PorktoberQue is held the last weekend each September at the Houston County Farm Center in Dothan, Alabama and is the area’s only sanctioned KCBS barbecue competition and Oktoberfest. This year PorktoberQue is held on Friday September 26th, from 5-10pm and Saturday, September 27, from 10am-6pm.Screen Shot 2014-05-06 at 3.12.08 PM