Today is Ember Days Friday of Summer. It is the first Friday following Pentecost Sunday. Summer Embers Days are meant to remind us to give thanks for God’s blessings of Nature and to appreciate those who toil the land. There is a great place of honor for those who labor in the fields, tend to the flocks and care for the land.
Today is also the Friday before Memorial Day. We all know what Memorial Day signals – the unofficial official start of summer, and the grilling season. Naturally the National Calendar has all sorts of important reminds for this day – Don’t Fry Day, Cooler Day and Road Trip Day. If you are like me, you thought Don’t Fry was a reference to cooking things in oil. It’s not. Since Memorial Day is the unofficial start of summer, Don’t Fry Day is a reminder to lather up with sunscreen while having all that outdoor fun. It’s not just a matter of not getting a sunburn. National Don’t Fry Day aims to raise awareness of the risks of overexposure to the sun, including skin cancer. They recommend the use of sunscreen of SPF 30 or higher, donning sunglasses to protect our eyes and to wear a wide-brimmed hat. So stay safe out there.
The Friday before Memorial Day has also been declared National Road Trip Day. In days gone by, Memorial Day Weekend was the start of family road trips. Millions of Americans would hit the road each year over the long weekend, visit friends, get together with family, and pay tribute to our American Heroes. National Road Trip Day serves as a reminder to be prepared. Pack up, fuel up, stock up and enjoy. Just be mindful of others on the road this summer. It’s going to get crowded out there with more than half of Americans electing for road trips to the great outdoors as a safe alternative to flying and amusement parks. All I can say is welcome to my world. I can’t remember the last time we vacationed in an amusement park. Road trips are such a great way to see the country. Adventures behold!
With all these road trips and outdoor plans, National Cooler Day fits in perfectly. Break out your coolers for the season. Clean ‘em up, and maybe even think about replacements. Here’s a fun fact, the materials needed to make coolers didn’t even exist until 1944, and it wasn’t until the 1950s that the first “portable icebox” made the scene. Today we take coolers for granted. And we’d be lost without them.
I find it interesting that May 28 is both National Hamburger Day and National Beef Burger Day. Aren’t they the same thing? Well, yes and no. Hamburgers and Beef Burgers are different names for the same thing – a grilled beef patty served on a bun. However, with all the push for plant based burgers, the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association and Bee Its What’s For Dinner wanted to create an emphasis on Beef in your Burgers. On May 26, 2020, the Registrar at Nation Day Calendar proclaimed Beef Burger Day to be established on May 28 in addition to Hamburger Day.
Now mind you, today in our house we won’t be eating a burger, beef or otherwise unless it’s a Salmon Burger. And it has nothing to do with global warming. It’s Friday. As old school Catholics, burgers just aren’t on the menu on Fridays. That doesn’t mean I can’t share a simple Burger Recipe. You can bet Burgers are going to be a big part of our Summertime grilling plans.
Have a great Friday everyone!
Classic Beef Burger
1-1/3 lb Ground beef
Hamburger Seasoning Blend
4 leaves Green Leaf Lettuce
2 Beefsteak Tomatoes
½ large Red Onion
Salt to taste
Pepper to taste
4 Sesame Seed Hamburger Buns
Thousand Island Dressing
Season ground beef with Hamburger Seasoning Blend, work seasoning into the meat. Form the ground beef into four 1/3-pound patties, set aside.
Wash lettuce leaves, pat dry and set aside. Trim ends from the tomatoes, then slice remaining tomatoes into four slices each, set aside. Peel and slice onion into rings, break rings apart and set aside.
Heat grill or iron skillet to medium-high heat. Cook burgers to desired doneness, about 4 minutes per side. Season with salt and pepper.
Pull burgers from the grill or skillet, let rest for a few minutes, blot any excess grease with paper towels. (The burgers will still be juicy on the inside, and the buns won’t get soggy).
Split hamburger buns, spread dressing on the bottom buns. Top with a lettuce leaf, a hamburger patty, a couple of slices of tomato and some raw onion rings. Serve and enjoy.