Burgers are like, totally de rigueur right now, at least in Toronto: The Toronto Star and The Globe and Mail have recently run articles about the number of burger joints that have popped up in the city. The Beast and I tried to visit one of them–Oh Boy Burger Market on Queen Street West–on Saturday, but there was a line up out the door! Luckily for us, we have a fantastic burger place minutes away from our home. Stampede Bison Burger, right beside the LCBO on Brock Ave, just north of Queen Street, has been open for well over a year now and we’ve become accustomed to taking out their fine fair and eating it at home.
We each get a cheese burger. The Beast also gets bacon on his. We always opt for beef but I’ve heard their bison burger is very good. But I have an aversion to exchanging meat sources in particular recipes. For example, I would never ever eat a turkey burger. And I get very upset when I see recipes in ladies’ magazines, like Canadian Living or Chatelaine, that call for ground chicken or turkey, in place of beef, in chilli or tacos. I’d rather have vegetarian chilli than ground turkey chilli. The words alone, ground turkey, make me feel so uncomfortable. What the fuck is so wrong with beef anyway (don’t answer that–it’s a rhetorical question.)
We each get an order of Stampede’s poutine too. They make excellent french fries that survive the bike-ride home with surprisingly good results. Their curds are the real deal from Quebec. My only qualm is that they use a vegetarian gravy, rather than the traditional chicken gravy, but this I can deal with because the vegetarian gravy is pretty good.
And of course we get an order of onion rings to share, just like when we visit Harvey’s on the Queensway.
Beast: This looks amazing. Good idea to have a burger night!
Foodie: I think so too. Do you want to watch an episode of The Sopranos while we eat?
Beast: No, let’s watch an episode of I, Claudius.
If you haven’t heard of I, Claudius, don’t worry. I can’t imagine most people under the age of 40 have. It’s a BBC-produced television series from 1976 based on the best-selling books by Robert Graves. I, Claudius and the second book, Claudius the God, are historical fiction at its best. The television show, which the Beast has wanted to rent for a very long time, stars Derek Jacobi, Patrick Stewart, and several other British thespians. It’s television at its most awkward: the make-up is laughable, the sets look like they may fall apart if somebody were to fart, and the production quality is worse than Corner Gas. That aside, it’s pretty entertaining if you like Roman history, especially the sort which includes murder, sex, and drugs. In fact, it’s probably not all that different than most Soprano story lines.
Foodie (after eating our burger dinner too quickly): I’m so full!
Beast: Me too.
Foodie: Didn’t we both feel painfully full the last we had a burger dinner?
Foodie: Maybe we shouldn’t get the onion rings next time.
Beast: No, I like the onion rings. Maybe we should just get plain french fries instead of the poutine.
Foodie: My stomach hurts really bad. Can we hold off on dessert?
Dessert was freshly baked chocolate chip cookies. I made the dough on the weekend and we just bake as many cookies as we see fit during the week nights.
Beast: Yes we can wait but don’t just make three cookies for each of us. Make 12.
Foodie: That’s disgusting.
Six cookies each sounded much more reasonable. Besides, they were little.
Foodie: Oh my god my stomach hurts so much.
Beast (thrashing on the couch): Ugg. Me too!
Foodie: Why did we eat them so fast?
Beast: I thought you were going to eat some of my portion so I tried to eat them first.
Foodie: Why would I do that? We’re not ten years old you know.
Beast: I don’t know but I feel terrible.
Foodie: Three cookies each would have been fine.
Beast: I think we should have waited a little longer in between the burgers and the cookies.
Foodie: You were the one that told me I had to get up and preheat the oven maybe twenty minutes after we finished the burgers.
Beast: I was wrong. It was too soon! Too much too soon!
Yes it was. But it was so totally “Roman”.
Foodie: **1/2 (half a star deduction for forgetting my tomato slice and for sauteed onions being too mushy.)