September 28, 2012 · 2:30 am
This is the very last step in the process, and the reason for the whole week’s worth of posts: the sauce. Without the chili hot sauce, it’s just a mess of ingredients on the plate. With the hot sauce, it’s truly a Rochester Garbage Plate.
Rochester Plate Sauce, the product that tops my homemade plate in the picture above, is a strikingly close facsimile to the stuff you’ll get in Rochester on a traditional plate. The sauce comes in a packet that can be heated up by placing the pouch in boiling water for two minutes and then pouring over your finished plate (that’s the mac salad, the homefries, then the burger). The Plate Sauce is a little bit on the spicy side, but it makes the plate a PLATE. Die hard plate fans will notice that it lacks the finely ground beef that traditional plates in Rochester feature but again, it’s probably as close as you’ll get if you’re a Rochester ex-pat living in Nebraska or Texas. Well worth the $10 it’ll cost you for 3 pouches.
The last step to the plate is the chopped onions (standard raw white onion, chopped), yellow mustard, and ketchup. And it is extremely important to note that the ketchup design is unique to each person: some prefer the swirly, some go with the smiley face, I prefer the checkerboard. It’s really up to you. And yes… it makes a difference.
September 27, 2012 · 2:30 am
This is a relatively self-explanatory step in the Garbage Plate process but I thought I’d fill you in anyhow. Garbage Plates can be topped with a variety of stuff: red hots, white hots, hamburgers, cheeseburgers, fried fish, even fried eggs (that’s a breakfast plate if you’re not from the Roch). But my personal favorite, and I would imagine the most popular choice, is cheeseburgers. And don’t go looking for some fancy-schmancy gourmet beef burger with artisan cheese to top it off. This is a good old fashioned ground beef, 1/2 inch thick hamburg with a slice of plain American cheese.
On the menu:
Serves 2 (makes 2 plates)
1/2 pound ground beef
Salt and pepper
2 slices of American cheese*
Mix ground beef in a bowl with salt and pepper. Pack ground beef down into the bottom of the bowl. Eye ball the diameter of the bowl and using the edge of your hand, make a line down the middle of the circle of ground beef. This ensures you have 2 patties of equal size.
Make a round ball with the beef and then flatten it out as thin as possible with your hands, or by pressing down on a cutting board. Grill the burgers on a grill, or in a skillet over medium/high heat on the stove top for 5 minutes on each side. Top the burger with cheese and close the grill cover or put tin foil tent over the skillet for 2 minutes so the cheese melts. Place burgers on top of mac salad and homefries.
*Confession: I had a bag of shredded cheddar that had to be used up so I topped the burgers with that. Don’t worry, still not gourmet. Just not as ghetto/authentic as American cheese.