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Adam Richman’s Malbec Burger

Adam Richman’s Malbec Burger

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This recipe is a twist on the traditional burger

Adam Richman's travel memoir/cookbook, Straight Up Tasty: Meals Memories & Mouthfuls from My Travels, is a collection of recipes based on the ingredients, techniques, and flavors he encountered through his travels. Here’s the recipe for his twist on the traditional burger, Malbec Burger with Creole Mustard Tomato Jam, courtesy of Alamos Wines.



  • 1/2 Pound ground lamb
  • 1/2 Pound ground pork
  • 1/2 Pound ground beef (85% lean)
  • 1/2 Cup panko breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 Cup roasted tomatoes, finely chopped (approximately 3 to 4 plum tomatoes roasted with a drizzle of olive oil until soft)
  • 1/3 Cup flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
  • 1/4 Cup roasted garlic, finely chopped (approximately a head of garlic roasted with a drizzle of olive oil until soft, then squeezed out of skin)
  • 3 Tablespoons sun-dried tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 3 Tablespoons roasted red peppers, finely chopped
  • 2 Tablespoons fire-roasted poblano chilies (packed in olive oil), finely chopped
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 Cup Alamos Malbec
  • 2 Teaspoons brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 Teaspoon paprika
  • 1 1/4 Teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 Teaspoon sea salt
  • 5 Kaiser rolls for entree size burgers or 10 small potato rolls for sliders, split, toasted and lightly buttered
  • Olive oil
  • Creole Mustard Tomato Jam (see recipe below)
  • sliced plum tomatoes
  • Watercress leaves

Creole Mustard Tomato Jam

  • 1/3 Cup Alamos Red Blend
  • 1/3 Cup crushed grape tomatoes
  • 2 1/2 Tablespoons blackberry or raspberry jam (with seeds)
  • 1 Teaspoon fresh cracked black pepper
  • 1 Cup sea salt
  • 1 Teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 Teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/3 Cup stone ground or Creole mustard

Smash away! How to make a better hamburger on a grill or in a pan

Every good burger has a healthy amount of fat, a hint of sweet and something surprising hidden between those buns.

That might be a windshield wiper&rsquos worth of mustard or a crunchy raw onion. Maybe it&rsquos an extra-thick slice of tomato or crumble of blue cheese. The "good-old-fashioned hamburger" craving is something that hits just about everyone who eats meat, including my grandmother, for whom hamburgers in summer are merely a means of transport for her friend&rsquos homegrown tomatoes.

In Austin, if you want a good-old-fashioned hamburger, you head to Nau&rsquos &mdash and if you want something fancy, head across the street to Jeffrey&rsquos. (You can read more about Austin&rsquos best restaurant burgers in Friday&rsquos Austin360.)

But at home, hamburgers are just as likely to wow if you follow some tricks of the trade and improvements we&rsquove learned since the days when a bag of store-bought seasoning mix was about as fancy as we got.

Just to check, I had a hamburger made with one of those mixes last week. Sure enough, with sugar, molasses and copious amounts of onion salt, the mix made for too sweet and salty of a burger.

In general, however, underseasoning and overmixing meat are two of the biggest mistakes we make when cooking burgers at home. Ground beef &mdash or, if you&rsquore really upping your burger game, a mix of ground meats &mdash needs spices, including some salt, distributed throughout. But if you mix too much, you end up with pate.

To avoid this, combine your seasonings together in a small bowl first, sprinkle some in a larger bowl, add the meat to the bowl, sprinkle the rest of the spice mixture on top and then mush together five or six times with your hands. Then, you&rsquoll be ready to start forming patties.

Although many of us use onion or garlic salt as part of our burger seasoning, finely chopped onions and garlic can add a pleasant texture and freshness of flavor to the meat. Try one or both of these aromatics if you haven&rsquot. If you don&rsquot like the crunch of onions in your burger, consider sauteing them first, which will mellow their flavor and reduce the bite.

Meat quality matters if you&rsquore trying to make a better burger. Chefs have become obsessive over what cuts of beef they grind for hamburger, throwing in a combination of brisket, short rib and sirloin &mdash nice cuts of meat that butchers at the grocery store might actually dissuade you from using in a hamburger you&rsquore making at home.

Sirloin is a leaner meat than chuck, round, brisket and short rib, which is what led cooks in Wisconsin to develop the state&rsquos signature butter burger. Butter, like an egg, adds the imperative element of fat to what otherwise might be too lean &mdash and dry &mdash of a burger.

But fat isn&rsquot the only way to keep a burger moist. Fine Cooking magazine recommends adding two or three tablespoons of cold water to your ground beef mixture to compensate for some of the water inherent to meat protein that seeps out once the meat has been ground.

Use gloves if you don&rsquot want to make contact with the meat with your bare hands &mdash but don&rsquot try to stir the mixture with a utensil. As you form the patties, press them thinner than you think you need to. Don&rsquot worry too much about making them perfectly round. A $10 burger press can come in handy if you are keen on making a bunch of uniform medium-rare burgers for a party, but if you&rsquore only making one or two, you might as well use your hands.

Some cooks like to press a small dent in the middle of the patty to keep it from swelling in the middle as it cooks. You could also make two really thin patties and stuff cheese between them for what might be one of the original stuffed burgers &mdash what some folks in the Upper Midwest call a Juicy Lucy.

When it&rsquos time to cook burgers, there&rsquos no doubt that these patties of meat are a match made in heaven for a charcoal grill. The briquettes, and soaked wood chips if you have them, will add a smokiness to the meat &mdash but you could also accomplish that with a few dashes of liquid smoke or Worcestershire sauce.

Propane grills are certainly faster than charcoal, but they are also expensive. If you find yourself without a grill, don&rsquot let the fear of pan-frying a burger stop you from making one. In fact, there&rsquos a perfectly good reason to fry burgers in a skillet or on a griddle: You can take a page straight out of the Shake Shack handbook and smash them as soon as they hit the hot surface. By pressing the raw meat into the heat, you create more surface area for the Maillard reaction to take place, and that&rsquos what gives meat its meaty flavor. (Just try not to rub it in to your friends who insist that the only decent way to cook a burger is over a flame.)

However, if you&rsquore using properly fatty meat in a skillet or on a griddle, you will have to drain off fat as you sear the burgers. Otherwise, you&rsquoll end up simmering the patties in grease, which will test the limits of even the most fat-celebrating foodie.

If you are grilling those patties, you shouldn&rsquot press them with a spatula because the raw meat will fall through the grate. Once they have already started to brown, smashing the patty will only squeeze out the juiciness that you&rsquove been trying so hard to maintain.

No matter which cooking method you use, start with high heat and then transition to lower heat after the first few minutes.

Like many meats, you can determine the doneness of a burger by gently pressing the middle of the burger to feel how soft it is. An instant-read thermometer inserted into the side of the patty is the most reliable way to determine if your burger is rare (120 degrees) or well-done (160 degrees) or somewhere in between. Food safety experts recommend eating burgers that have been cooked to 145 to 150 degrees.

After you&rsquove cooked them, now you get to decide how to serve them. The recipes we&rsquove included here are definitely on the fancy side. You can easily spiff up a "regular" hamburger with upscale mayonnaise or aioli, homemade or store-bought pickles (or pickled vegetables), nice salad greens or an onion kaiser roll.

Malbec Burgers with Creole Mustard Tomato Jam

Red wine goes beautifully with beef. I like the fact that the wine not only breaks down the meat a little bit but also that it adds a nuanced flavor throughout the bite. I came up with this dish while filming in New Orleans &mdash and that is where the notion of Creole mustard came in. I love its creaminess, the big seeds and that hit of vinegar and spice. I have often loved the use of things such as tomato jam or confit in the place of ketchup on burgers. Here, we just use a nice, dark fruit-berry jam, which echoes the seediness of the mustard and brings out the fruitiness of the wine and the tomato.

1/2 lb. ground beef (85 percent lean)

1/2 cup panko bread crumbs

1/2 cup finely chopped roasted tomatoes

1/3 cup finely chopped flat-leaf parsley

1/4 cup finely chopped roasted garlic

3 Tbsp. finely chopped sun-dried tomatoes

3 Tbsp. finely chopped roasted red peppers

2 Tbsp. finely chopped fire-roasted poblano chiles (packed in olive oil)

1/2 cup dry red wine, such as Malbec or Cabernet Sauvignon

1 1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes

Olive oil, for pan searing

5 kaiser rolls for entrée-size burgers or 10 small potato rolls for sliders, split, toasted and lightly buttered

For serving: Watercress leaves, sliced plum tomatoes, Creole Mustard Tomato Jam

Heat the oven to 375 degrees. In a large bowl, use your hands to combine all the burger ingredients except the kaiser rolls. Form the mixture into 5 large (or 10 small) patties.

Heat an oven-safe pan over high heat until drops of water skitter across the surface. Add a quarter inch of olive oil and heat for 30 seconds. Sear the patties, working in batches if necessary, until browned on the bottom, about 3 minutes. Flip the burgers and brown the other side. Arrange the seared burgers on a rimmed baking sheet lined with aluminum foil.

Transfer the baking sheet to the oven and cook the burgers 5 to 7 minutes for medium doneness.

Place each burger on the bottom half of a toasted roll and top with watercress, sliced tomato, Creole Mustard Tomato Jam and the top half of the roll. Serve hot. Makes 5 entrée-size burgers or 10 sliders.

Creole Mustard Tomato Jam

1/3 cup fruity red wine, such as Merlot

1/3 cup crushed grape tomatoes

2 1/2 Tbsp. blackberry or raspberry jam

1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

1/3 cup Creole or stone-ground mustard

In a small saucepan set on medium-high heat, combine the wine, tomatoes, jam, salt, pepper, garlic powder and onion powder, stirring constantly, until thick and relatively uniform in consistency. Mash the tomato bits into the sauce. Transfer to a nonreactive bowl to cool. When cooled almost to room temperature, stir in the mustard. Makes about 1 cup.

&mdash From "Straight Up Tasty: Meals, Memories, and Mouthfuls from My Travels" by Adam Richman (Clarkson Potter, $29.99)

Grilled Bison Burgers with Caramelized Onions and Crispy Shiitakes

I know it says bison here, but that lean meat is really just a great excuse to hold a mushroom-a-palooza while getting a load of brain-boosting B12. First, we mix the bison with chopped-up cremini mushrooms. Then on top go a few crispy shiitakes that have been tossed with smoked paprika and olive oil. In between? Caramelized onions. Put it all on a lily pad of butter lettuce and it tastes like a Tower of Umami! Store these patties tightly wrapped in plastic wrap in the refrigerator for up to 3 days or, uncooked, tightly wrapped in the freezer for 1 month.

&mdash Rebecca Katz and Mat Edelson

8 oz. shiitake mushrooms, stems removed and thinly sliced

4 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil

1/2 large red onion, sliced

3 oz. cremini mushrooms, stemmed and finely processed in a food processor

3 Tbsp. coarsely chopped parsley

1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper

2 skinless, boneless anchovies

1 tsp. extra-virgin olive oil

Pinch of red pepper flakes

4 butter lettuce leaves, washed and dried

Heat oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment. Place the shiitakes in a bowl and drizzle with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and the salt and paprika, tossing until evenly coated. Arrange the mushrooms in a single layer on the prepared sheet pan and roast until crisp and browned, about 20 minutes.

To caramelize the onions, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. When the oil starts to shimmer, add the onion and a generous pinch of salt. Cook slowly, stirring occasionally, until the onion is caramelized and very soft, 20 to 30 minutes. Remove onions from the pan.

To make the burgers, place the bison, cremini mushrooms, parsley and black pepper in a large bowl.

Rinse the anchovies and, in a small bowl or mortar and pestle, mash them to a paste with 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Using the same skillet as the onions, heat the 1 teaspoon of oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes to the mashed anchovies, stirring to combine. Sauté for 1 minute, then transfer this mixture to the large bowl with the meat and mushroom mixture.

Using your hands, gently mix until everything is well combined. Shape into 4 equal-size patties. Heat a grill or grill pan to medium-high heat and lightly coat with a neutral-flavored oil. Grill the patties, turning once, for 3 minutes per side. Serve each patty on a lettuce leaf topped with some caramelized onion and crispy shiitake mushrooms. Serves 4.

&mdash From "The Healthy Mind Cookbook: Big-Flavor Recipes to Enhance Brain Function, Mood, Memory, and Mental Clarity" by Rebecca Katz and Mat Edelson (Ten Speed Press, $29.99)

Celebrity chef and television show host Adam Richman is dropping into the TODAY kitchen to share a few of his favorite summery seafood recipes and share his expert tips on how to properly clean and prep clams for cooking. He shows us how to make grilled clams, bloody mary gazpacho with shrimp and baked clams with breadcrumb stuffing.

1. Live clams will be responsive! If they're open when you get them home, just knock them lightly on the counter, or, like my dad did, give them a solid tap with the back of a wooden spoon. A live clam will close when tapped. A dead one will not. All clams must close if you are planning to eat them!

2. Flush out all the grit and sand in the clams prior to eating. Mollusks are basically filters, so encourage them to push out the icky stuff inside using the following method: Soak clams in a container filled with cool water for 20-30 minutes. You can also add salt or even cornmeal to the water. There's no need to add a lot of either ingredient, just 1/4 cup of each or just 1/3 cup salt in about 3 quarts of water.

3. If you are going to throw the clams on the grill, you don't necessarily have to do this next step, as most stuff on the outside will burn off, but, using a stiff brush (like one you might use for potatoes), give the outside of the shell a scrub to get any excess seaweed, barnacles, etc.

Adam Richman's Baked Clams

Big, abundant Italian dinners were a major part of my youth. I was not really a seafood guy back then, but these wonderful, flavorful, stuffing-like morsels were my first and favorite gateway into seafood and still evoke a sense of nostalgia eating them today. Instead of the traditional Italian breadcrumbs, I like to use potato rolls or Hawaiian bread because they have a sweetness that echoes the clams themselves.

Adam Richman's Grilled Littleneck Clams

One of the best things about learning to cook from my family was the fact that none of our recipes were conventional. My dad loved to grill in our backyard, but instead of just burgers and hot dogs, we would often get gourmet Italian sausages from the local salumeria and all kinds of wonderful clams from the boats in Brooklyn. It was amazing to see these foods that I had just seen coming off of boats thrown on the grill, able to be consumed just moments later. Just the slightest addition of lemon or cocktail sauce made this one of the most cherished tastes of my youth. And please try your best not to spill the wonderful brine!

Adam Richman's Bloody Mary Gazpacho with Shrimp

I have always appreciated the refreshing nature of cold gazpacho — and the novel notion that a soup could serve as a refreshment — and with a splash of vodka stirred in, it evokes the bite of a classic bloody mary. The warm shrimp add texture, and I love the cold-hot combo.

If you like those seafood-filled recipes, you should also try these:

Secret Eats with Adam Richman

Adam Richman travels to Johannesburg, South Africa, to sample the city's off-menu eats, including a bacon-wrapped sandwich stuffed with four kinds of cheese, succulent braised lamb shank, a Mediterranean kofta wrap and a decadent chocolate doughnut sundae.

Cashew 'Cue

Adam Richman's on the hunt for secret restaurants and off-menu dishes in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, including a hidden bowl of pho, off-menu cashew smoked ribs, a secret soul music burger and a hidden garden restaurant in the middle of the city.

Wok It Out

Adam Richman is on the hunt for secret eats in Hong Kong, including a giant off-menu tomahawk steak at a hard-to-spot pub and wings at a speakeasy hidden inside a stamp shop.

Searching for Satay

Adam Richman seeks out secret eats in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, including satay found off the beaten path, a spicy burger with black buns and a nature hike that leads to the best grilled seafood in the city.

Polish Pizza Puzzle

Adam Richman finds secret eats in Warsaw, Poland, including a Polish spin on Neapolitan pizza, an off-menu version of a classic Polish street food, and a homestyle restaurant hidden inside an apartment building.

Under the Radar Rome

Adam Richman travels to Rome to uncover the city's culinary secrets, including a unique take on Cacio e Pepe at a restaurant located in a castle-walled city and traditional porchetta in limited supply.

Adam Richman had to get in shape even before shooting Man v. Food

It’s easy to think that big eating is a big man’s game, and that a huge appetite is a far more important factor than decent physical conditioning. Then again, a look at the lean and ultra-fit competitive eating legend Takeru Kobayashi indicates that when the portions get super-dupersized, quite the opposite can be true.

While answering fan questions for the ESPN website, Adam Richman made clear that he was well aware of the benefits of being as healthy as possible before he started shooting Man v. Food. So, before the cameras started rolling and the mega-dishes started coming, he took steps to make sure his physical condition was par for the course. "When I started the show before the first episode was filmed, I went to specialists ahead of time because I wanted to start with a baseline of good health, versus correcting bad health down the road," he revealed.

Indoor Grilling Recipes

Now that you’re armed with all the right tips and tools, it’s time to start cooking! To get your indoor grilling party started, Richman shares some of his favorite recipes from his book Straight Up Tasty: Meals, Memories, and Mouthfuls from my Travels.

Juicy Lucia

Evan Sung, 2015

“The Juicy Lucy is easily the Twin Cities’ most iconic burger. This cheese-filled masterpiece has been the subject of feverish debate for generations, with two iconic spots claiming to be its originator: Matt’s Bar and the 5-8 Club. To avoid my potential partisan affiliation, I offer up a variation that bears no resemblance to either of those progenitors but pays tribute nonetheless. This Italian version combines bulk Italian sausage with ground beef, as well as fresh basil and roasted peppers, and it’s stuffed with fresh mozzarella cheese.”


  • 1 pound ground beef
  • .75 tsp salt
  • .5 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tsp liquid smoke
  • 1 lb hot Italian pork sausage, casings removed
  • .5 lb fresh mozzarella cheese
  • 1 cup fresh basil, cut into thin chiffonade slices
  • 3 roasted peppers
  • 6 semolina rolls
  • Olive oil, for grilling the rolls
  • Roasted Garlic Mayo
  1. Mix the beef with the salt, pepper, garlic, liquid smoke, and sausage meat. Form into 12 thin patties, each roughly 5 inches in diameter.
  2. Cut the cheese into 6 slices and place 1 slice on top of half the patties. Top the cheese with some basil, half a roasted red pepper, and finish with a second meat patty. Crimp the edges of the patties to enclose the stuffing, making sure no cheese is exposed.
  3. Chill the patties for about 15 minutes. Preheat your grill or a cast-iron skillet to medium high.
  4. Place the patties on the grill and cook until medium and no longer red in the center, about 6 minutes on each side. While the burgers are cooking, brush the cut sides of each roll with olive oil and grill or toast until golden.
  5. To serve, place the burgers in the grilled rolls and top with a dollop of the garlic mayo.

*Roasted Garlic Mayo


  1. 1 Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit
  2. Peel off and discard the outer layers of the garlic skin, leaving the individual cloves intact. Using a knife, cut off about .5 inch of the top of the garlic head to expose the individual cloves.
  3. Put the garlic in an oven-safe pan and rub the olive oil over the exposed cloves. Roast the garlic for 30 minutes, until the entire head is very soft.
  4. Remove the pan from the oven and let the garlic cool. Squeeze the garlic cloves from their skins into a small bowl. Add the mayonnaise and whisk to blend thoroughly. Refrigerate in an airtight container.

Grilled Asparagus Rafts

“When you read this you may think, that’s a recipe? Yes, it is! Skewering the asparagus spears together into a ‘raft’ makes them easier to flip and easier to cook evenly. Trust me, you’ll thank me once you’ve tried this. Be sure to use great-quality olive oil and great-quality salt — you will have an exponentially better final product.”


  • 2 bunches of thick asparagus spears (about 24)
  • 4 wooden skewers
  • .25 cup olive oil
  • Flaky sea salt to taste
  • Freshly cracked black pepper to taste
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Snap the ends of the asparagus where they break, then trim all the stalks to the same length. Line half the spears up side by side, and thread 2 skewers through the aligned spears to hold them all together like a raft. Repeat with the remaining spears and skewers.
  3. Place the “rafts” on a rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle the rafts with the olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
  4. Place the baking sheet in the oven and roast the rafts for 10 minutes. Turn the rafts over and roast for another 10 minutes, or until tender but still crunchy. Pile the rafts onto a warmed platter and let your guests slide a few spears onto their plates.

Milwaukee Beer-Braised Bratwurst Sandwich with Pittsburgh-Style Slaw

Evan Sung, 2015

“In Green Bay’s Lambeau Field stadium, there is a restaurant called Curly’s Pub, named for the great Packers coach Curly Lambeau. Tailgating culture is extremely strong in the great state of Wisconsin, and the sovereign meat product of a Wisconsin tailgate is the bratwurst. At Curly’s Pub, I saw the brats braised slowly with beer and onions, which added a depth of sweetness and flavor. The slaw is inspired by the great Primanti Bros. restaurant in Pittsburgh. Slaw appears on all their sandwiches (along with French fries, of course). It’s got a wonderful bracing acidity and is more of an Italian salad than your traditional mayonnaise-based picnic slaw.”

Ingredients for the slaw:

  • 1 pound green cabbage, shredded
  • .25 cup sugar
  • .5 tbsp kosher salt
  • .25 tsp celery seed
  • .25 cup vegetable oil
  • .25 cup apple cider vinegar
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste

Ingredients for the Brats:

  • 4 bratwurst links
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 2 12-ounce bottles of beer
  • 4 hoagie rolls, toasted
  • Spicy mustard to taste (optional)
  1. Combine the cabbage, sugar, salt, and celery seed in a colander set over a bowl. Let stand for at least 1 hour and up to 4 hours to let the cabbage fully wilt and release its juices
  2. Transfer the wilted cabbage to a clean bowl (discard any remaining liquid). Add the oil and vinegar and toss to coat. Season with pepper to taste.
  3. Put the brats and the onion in a large Dutch oven and cover with the beer. Place over high heat and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to simmer and cook until the brats are fully cooked, about 20 minutes.
  4. Stuff the toasted rolls with the brats and onions. Top with the cabbage slaw and some spicy mustard, if using, and serve.

On the grill:

  1. Put the brats and the onion in a large pot and cover with the beer. Place directly on the grill, over high heat and bring to a boil.
  2. Remove brats from the beer and onion bath and place directly on the grill, grilling until fully cooked. Tip: If you prefer to keep the sausage moist and juicy, transfer the brats from the pot to a cast-iron pan on the grill and cook until fully cooked.

Elote (Corn on the Cob)

Evan Sung, 2015

“This is, without question, my favorite Mexican street food. It’s kind of amazing how adding just a few elements to the corn creates a sensation that is so balanced and yet hits your palate on every level: sour from the lime, creamy from the Cotija cheese and mayo, and a little bit of a bite from the garlic, with the savory perfume of paprika setting off the sweet corn itself. Feel free to experiment and add embellishments like toasted pumpkin seeds or sesame seeds.”


  • 4 ears corn, shucked and silk removed, but with a partial stalk kept on as a handle
  • .5 cup unsalted butter (1 stick), softened
  • 1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • .5 cup Japanese Kewpie mayonnaise (or your favorite mayonnaise)
  • .5 cup grated Cotija cheese
  • 4 tsp paprika
  • 1 lime, cut into 4 wedges
  1. In a small mixing bowl, mix the butter with the cilantro and garlic until well combined.
  2. Preheat a grill or a ridged grill pan over medium-high heat.
  3. Grill the corn until hot and lightly charred all over, 7 to 10 minutes.
  4. Coat the ears in the seasoned butter. Wrap each ear in aluminum foil and place the corn on the grill for another 2 minutes.
  5. Unwrap the ears and spread them evenly with the mayonnaise. Sprinkle with Cotija cheese, dust with paprika, and serve hot with a lime wedge to squeeze over the top.

Armed with Richman’s advice and recipes, you can turn your urban abode into the city’s cookout hot spot this summer. To hear more about Richman’s culinary travels, check out his book America the Edible: A Hungry History, from Sea to Dining Sea or follow him on social media to stay up to date on his latest adventures.

All recipes courtesy of Straight Up Tasty by Adam Richman. Clarkson Potter, 2015.

Article originally published October 2, 2017. Last updated January 2020.

Adam Richman realized it was taking a toll

Adam Richman's original show, Man v. Food, returned without him, replacing him with new host Casey Webb. That brings up the question of why he quit in the first place, and why didn't he return?

On January 27, 2012, Richman confirmed (via a Facebook post) that, "I am out of the food challenge game & while I love how that phenomenon has caught hold worldwide, and love hearing about your culinary conquests — I have 'hung up my competitive fork' so to speak."

Why? According to the Huffington Post, Richman was starting to worry about the toll on his health the show — and his lifestyle — was taking. In addition to having developed sleep apnea, he also said that catching a glimpse of himself in the mirror made him rethink what he needed to do to get healthy.

And based on what he told The Guardian, he stepped away in part because he thought the show had simply run its course. He told them, ". the spectacle diminishes over time. [. ] I believe that if you wait for your audience to say they want to see something new, you've waited too long."

Recipe adapted from 'Straight Up Tasty,' by Adam Richman (Clarkson Potter) for Mike's Hard Lemonade

Yield: 4 servings

Prep Time: 20 Minutes

Cook Time: 10 Minutes

Total Time: 30 Minutes


1 tablespoon five-spice powder

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

2 small baguettes, split lengthwise and toasted

4 slices canadian bacon, cooked

10 ounces pork pâté, halved lengthwise


1. In a small bowl, mix together the mayonnaise and Sriracha until smooth, then set aside.

2. In a large bowl, season the ground pork with the five-spice powder, salt and pepper. Shape the seasoned meat into 2 rectangular patties and brush with the olive oil.

3. Light a grill, or alternatively heat a cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Add the patties and sear until golden brown and cooked through, 3 to 4 minutes per side. Transfer the patties to a plate and let rest for 3 minutes, then halve each crosswise.

4. On a cutting board, lay out the bottom of both baguettes. Slather each with some of the Sriracha mayo and top each with 2 halves of the burgers. Divide the Canadian bacon, pâté, carrots, daikon, cilantro and lettuce leaves between each burger. Place the tops of the baguette over top and cut each sandwich in half crosswise, then serve.


Tap top of clams to make sure they are alive. If they are open prior to cooking, a tap will make them close. Any clams that do not respond are dead and should not be eaten.

Place clams in large container or a bowl with cool tap water and salt, and let stand 20-30 minutes.

Remove clams from water, rinse and scrub off any additional "gunk" there may be on the outside.

Place clams on the hot grill making sure grate is level, and grill without moving 6-8 minutes. Carefully removed the clams using tongs or heat safe gloves, taking care not to spill liquid inside. If any clams do not open, discard them! They are dead and not fit for consumption.

Place clams on tray with slices of lemon and cocktail sauce on the side. To eat, squeeze lemon on top and spoon cocktail sauce, if using, on top of the clam in open shell and scoop out with your top teeth. Cocktail forks may be used but it is way less fun.

Recipe adapted from 'Straight Up Tasty,' by Adam Richman (Clarkson Potter) for Mike's Hard Lemonade

Yield: 10 sliders

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes


2 habanero chiles--stemmed, halved and seeded

2 jalapeños--stemmed, halved and seeded

2 tablespoons olive oil, divided

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

1 tablespoon chili powder

1 tablespoon ground cumin

10 slices pepper jack cheese

10 small brioche rolls, toasted


1. Light a grill, or alternatively heat a cast-iron grill pan over medium-high heat. Place a large piece of aluminum foil on a clean work surface, put the habaneros and jalapeños in the center, and drizzle with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Season with salt and pepper, then crimp the edges of the foil to seal into a packet. Grill the packet until the peppers are soft and lightly charred, 15 to 20 minutes. Remove the peppers from the packet and let cool, then chop finely.

2. In a medium bowl, combine the chopped peppers with the ground pork and ground beef until incorporated. Using your hands, form the mixture into 10 small patties, then season liberally with salt and pepper.

3. In a small bowl, combine the chili powder, cumin and cayenne. Sprinkle the seasoning over both sides of the patties. In another small bowl, mix the ketchup and Sriracha until smooth.

4. Place the patties on the hot grill. Brush the tops with the ketchup mixture and cook, flipping once and rebrushing with the ketchup mixture, until charred and medium rare, 2 to 3 minutes per side. After you flip the burgers, top with pepper jack cheese to let melt.

5. Lay out the bottoms of the buns on a platter and place a burger on each. Top with the bun tops and serve.

Watch the video: Adam vs The OMG Burger Challenge: The 12 High Burger Made With 12 Patties! Man v Food (May 2022).