I’d Order That in the Southwest

Amy Dodson,I'd Order That. Southwest burgers
Amy Dodson, food and travel writer, meets the infamous GCCB

Meet Amy Dodson, founder of I’d Order That, a blog celebrating the food, travel, lifestyle (and burgers) of the American southwest.

Amy has previously written about the best burgers in Durango. Now she tells Best Burger Review about a few more of her favorites.

BBR: Tell us about you and your blog. I started my blog as a celebration … to share the things I love and continue to discover about my adopted forever home, the American Southwest. The name came about a few years ago while I was testing a butter grilled ribeye with red chile steak rub. My husband tasted it and said, “If I were in a restaurant, I’d pay for that.  I’d order that.”  That began our game to become better cooks, and set the bar … only ‘I’d Order Thats’ make the blog.

Continue reading I’d Order That in the Southwest

Stacy Lanson, Motorcycling Ghostwriter

Ghostwriting about Burgers, Bikes and Ghosts

Stacy Lanson is a foodie. She creates recipes, evaluates new products and writes about food.

burger enthusiast, Stacy Lanson
Motorcycling ghostwriter and burger enthusiast, Stacy Lanson, picnicking with a Sourdough Zin Burger, from Grapes, in Jerome, Az.

You might not know her name because she’s a ghostwriter — mostly for motorcycle mags — but she came out of the closet to give Best Burger Review readers on a burger (and biker) journey through the re-invented ghost town of Jerome, Arizona. Hailing from a long line of Midwestern cattle ranchers, Stacy has boundless enthusiasm for burgers. Best Burger Review talks with her about her best burger experiences.

BBR: What is your current relationship with burgers?
As a foodie
— I adore burgers! They just make me feel better. I am an emotional eater, and will eat burgers when I am feeling blue, festive, anemic…I really don’t need an excuse. The more vibrant they look, the more I want them. I eat with my eyes first, for sure.

 I make my burgers tall generally, and cut them in half to see their juicy souls.  ~ Stacy Lanson

As a ghostwriter — I mostly do my foodie ghost writing for motorcycle enthusiast publications, mainly Southwest destination touring stories, especially rally towns. The culinary coverage runs the spectrum from dive joints to the totally upscale. I have found exquisite burgers in all categories. There definitely are venue owners that add in love and take great pride in their burgers. It is really nice to see…and, taste!

As a consultant — I have worked with several food companies over the years. I evaluate new products and give feedback. I usually have suggestions for expanding their market, product line, or new ways for using their offerings. I’ve made cooking videos for their contests, too. A pre-shamed Paula Deen commented that I was “cute as a button” when she saw one of my videos. My 15 s-e-c-o-n-d-s of fame on a celebrity chef’s radar.

 As a recipe creator — I am always improving burgers at home. For my home cooking, I follow my whims of the moment, and am often inspired by what is peaking in my garden. No formal (burger) recipes, thus far.

BBR: What’s your best hamburger memory?
My best hamburger memory was when I was about four and I was going through my first drive thru car wash in my mother’s Mustang. I had my A&W burger, fries, and Baby (Root) Beer laid before me on the opened door of the glove compartment. The moment was an all sensory experience, and subconsciously I probably associate burgers with fun, new experiences. I do find I leisure-eat a whole bunch of burgers when I travel.

BBR: What’s the Best Burger in your current city?
The best burger where I live* is my own creation with a copious side of beer. I live in Sedona, AZ. We have the only McDonald’s with teal arches, which have been know to be stolen from time to time. There are many lovely burgers around town.

Sedona McDonalds has Teal arches
Sedona’s teal arches are popular with tourists and mischievous thieves

BBR: What makes a great burger?
What is important to me is that the ingredients are the freshest available. I am all about color, and I like to butter and toast or grill the buns. I frequently make my own guac, caramelize my onions, and I am so pro-bacon. I am not a huge fan of American cheese, when there are so many other hearty varieties on the market. I love quality condiments. I make my burgers tall generally, and cut them in half to see their juicy souls.

 BBR: What is your favorite burger?
Right now, my favorite burger is whatever my daughter, Scarlett, is making for me. She is 24, and I am glad she finds my burger enthusiasm contagious. Like me, she is very experimental in the kitchen. We iMessage our cooking photos to each other, and we are often surprised that we are making the same dish on the same day. Our taste buds are psychic!

BBR: Which burger is on your bucket list?
The one at the pearly gates, if I am so blessed. My halo is a little tarnished.

BBR: What burger do you love but are embarrassed to admit?
The magnificent In-N-Out Double-Double Burger..such a cliche. They don’t exist in Sedona, as yet, although a local business man claims he would give commercially zoned land, if they would build. If I am traveling through a town that has one, I stop! My daughter insists she will have an In-N-Out Cookout Trailer as catering at her wedding. I know that will bring out the +1s on the RSVPs!

*Update – Lanson is currently heading to live with the bikers and burgers in California.

[Image credits -Teal arches by Big slick69 at en.wikipedia (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons. Other images by Joshua Placa.]


Katie Johnstonbaugh, Author

Burgers, Beyond the Onions 

Katie Johnstonbaugh is the creator of the food blog, Dishin & Dishes, a Katie JohnstonbaughTV food personality for Freedom 43tv, and author of Food Lovers’s Guide to Oklahoma. She told us about Oklahoma’s fried onion burgers.

BBR: What is your Favorite Burger?
My favorite burger that I make at home would (have) cheese stuffed inside, (aka Juicy Lucy). I make one (called the All-American Stuffed Burger on my blog) that has chopped, cooked bacon and Greek yogurt (to keep it moist) mixed in with the raw hamburger meat before it’s shaped into patties. The cheese I stuff inside is smoked cheddar. While that’s cooking, I caramelize some onions to top it, then add some made-in-Oklahoma BBQ sauce called Head Country. The result is unbelievable!

All American Stuffed Burger
You’ll want to make Katie’s All American – Cheddar, bacon, caramelized onions…

BBR: What is the best burger in your current city?
The best burger in (Oklahoma City) is all about the buns. Republic Gastropub serves up their signature burger, “The Republic Burger,” with some fantastic toppings like caramelized onion, applewood smoked bacon relish, a couple of cheeses like bleu and Gruyere, and then adds some arugula and a perfectly fried egg on top. The meat is a custom blend of Angus beef that is hand-pattied. But the thing that sends it over the top for me are the homemade pretzel buns. They are fantastic!

BBR: What burger is on your bucket list?
The burger that is definitely on my bucket list might be surprising to you after all those horribly unhealthy ingredients I’ve previously listed. It’s the Earth Burger, from Umami Burger, in Los Angeles. The patty is made with mushroom and edamame, and has a white soy aioli, truffled ricotta, cipollini onions, lettuce and slow roasted tomatoes. It comes on a grilled brioche bun.  If you’ve had a brioche bun before you just sighed with me didn’t you?

Republic Burger
The Republic Burger –  Bleu and Gruyere, bacon-caramelized onion jam …

BBR: What burger do you love but are embarrassed to admit?
Oh my. The Whopper. I worked at Burger King in high school and still love the taste of one. Memories? Reflections? High school era nostalgia? Either way I do grab one once in a blue moon. Shhh, please don’t tell anyone!?

(Photos courtesy of Dishin & Dishes)