Johnny B. Goode Brats & Statesboro Blues Burgers
As we make plans to celebrate Independence Day with an evening full of burgers, brats and fireworks and friends, I have put together recipes that offer new versions of these classic Independence Day foods. I have taken my inspiration for these recipes from two of my favorite classic all-American songs.
The “Johnny B. Goode Brat” takes its inspiration from the renowned work of Chuck Berry and the food of New Orleans, with a Louisiana Hot Link topped with grilled shrimp and a cajun aioli.
Statesboro Blues was first recorded by blues legend Blind Willie McTell in 1928. Like the cheeseburger it has been reinterpreted numerous times over the years: notably Taj Mahal and The Allman Brothers. For the “Statesboro Blues Burger” I have reinterpreted traditional foods of the American countryside. The burger features grilled peaches, collard green slaw and smoked bacon. It is an exciting balance of smoke, salt, savory and sweet.
Happy grilling this Fourth of July,
Johnny B. Goode Brats
“Deep down in Louisiana close to New Orleans
Way back up in the woods among the evergreens
There stood a log cabin made of earth and wood
Where lived a country boy named Johnny B. Goode.” Chuck Berry.
4 Louisiana Hot Links
½ pound shrimp
4 large hoagie rolls, split open down the top.
½ cup mayonnaise
1 teaspoon ketchup
Juice of half a lemon
1 teaspoon Moburts cajun seasoning, or blackening seasoning
Iceberg lettuce, cut very fine, almost shredded.
Combine the mayo, ketchup, lemon and cajun seasoning to make the Cajun Aioli. Set aside.
Grill the hot links over indirect heat. Placing them directly over hot coals may cause them to burn. Cook until clear juices run from them and are firm to the touch, about ten minutes. Season the shrimp with salt and pepper. When the hot links are almost done cook the shrimp over direct heat, until cooked just through, about three to four minutes. Remove shrimp from grill and dice them into half inch pieces.
Put cajun aioli inside the hoagie rolls. Top with a hot link and liberal portion of shrimp. Garnish with lettuce and pickles.
Statesboro Blues Burgers
“I’m going to the county, baby do you wanna go?
If you can’t make it, your sister Lucille say she wanna go.” Blind WIllie McTell
4 Unseasoned Braveheart Beef hamburger patties
4 large burger buns
½ lb. Bowser’s Smoked Bacon
1 large ripe peach
1 bunch collard greens
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 teaspoon white vinegar
Large pinch of white sugar
Salt and pepper to taste
Chiffonade the collard greens by rolling a leaf and then slicing as thinly as you possibly can. Cut 1 ½ cups this way. Combine the greens, mayonnaise vinegar and sugar. Season with salt and pepper and adjust other ingredients to fit your taste. Cut the peach into half inch thick slices, cutting around the pit to create a donut shaped slice.
The bacon can be either precooked inside, or cooked on the grill in a cast iron pan while you cook the burgers. Season the burgers with salt and pepper. Grill as you normally would. When the burgers are almost done grill the peaches over the hottest part of your grill. Cook until the grill marks are slightly charred, three seconds to a minute per side.
Top the bottom buns with a small pile of the collard green slaw, top with a burger and then two slices of bacon and a slice of peach.
You can add a mild meltable white cheese such as white American cheese or shredded mozzarella to this burger with great results if you wish.