I recently acquired a mint condition countertop Rival Grind-O-Mat circa 1969. Oh, it’s retro alright. I especially enjoy the vintage instructions and description.

“A homemaker’s dream!”

We tried grinding some brisket the other day, which worked, but could have gone smoother. So I hit the Internet in search of advice on the best way to grind meat. The two most important steps: 1) partially freeze the meat prior to grinding, and 2) cube the meat as to not overwork the grinder. This information was promptly passed on to this apartment’s meat handler.

As I reached for a package of ground meat at H-E-B yesterday, he interjected: “Don’t we have chicken breasts in the freezer? I can grind those. That’s what they’re in there for!” “Oh yes, let’s do that instead.”

Our home-ground meat intended for the 2005 National Chicken Cook-Off’s winning recipe then adapted by fellow blogger stickygooeycreamychewy to the delicious, if wordy, Pacific Rim Chicken Burgers with Ginger Mayonnaise and Kitchen Sink Asian Slaw

Only two recipe changes this time: Not huge fans of raw cabbage, we omitted the coleslaw mix in favor of creating a simple mango-pineapple relish. Sambal Oelek – the fiery and borderline outrageous, deep dark paste dotted with yellow seeds and flecks of red chilli skins – replaced the Sriracha in both the burgers and the relish.

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I’ll also note that I had to make my own ginger slaw dressing, teriyaki sauce and sweet pickle relish out of necessity. Not staples in our apartment.

The extra juicy burger with its mounded toppings was a mouthful and thensome. Even after cutting it into two more manageable pieces, I still managed to drop schmutz on my shirt, pants, face, placemat, napkin…

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Don’t worry, I snatched those pieces right up and ate them!