Happier Meals

Posted in Art, Food
By Sam Bathe on 17 Jun 2011

Asking four Toronto chefs to remix a McDonald’s Big Mac combo, The Grid have tried to turn the fast food joint’s efforts into something that could really be considered delectable food and (at a stretch) not look out of place on a five-star restaurant’s menu. But without any other ingredients allowed, it sure was a tough challenge, that they probably didn’t quite succeed in. Some amazing creativity in the kitchen still though, and a lot of fun trying. Photography by Reena Newman.

Fabio Bondi’s (top) took three tries, but in the end, he tuned up a mortadella (an Italian cold cut) out of emulsified patties, lettuce, onions and sweet-and-sour sauce, but when he poached it, it exploded. Then the same in a hot pan. In the end he had to use the restaurant’s backyard smoker, while the buns were toasted into crostini and the nodini (bread knots) made from fries.

Father-and-son team Raj and Aravind Kozhikott aimed to recreate something in the style of their restaurant’s Indian cuisine, dicing the meat for a samosa filling, then mixing it with the onion, using barbecue sauce as a binding agent. Two rolled out buns formed the wrap, while the fried were bundled up using strips of their cut up box. The cheese was scraped off the patty and used as sauce.

“I wanted to keep it kitschy, which is what we do here at The Drake,” explained chef Anthony Rose, icing the burger with a blend of fries, ketchup, special sauce and Coke. Extra fries were then used as candles but actually lit up when blasted with a blowtorch because they were so greasy.

Craig Harding and Nigel French went for a (sort of) pasta dish, juliening to fries to creat a sort of spaghetti, served with a patty and ketchup bolognese. A grated, toasted bun acted as parmesan.

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