Ditch The Butter and Flat Top To Make a Patty Melt That Won’t Be a Boat Anchor in Your Stomach

Ever had one of those cafe/diner patty melts that makes you wish you hadn’t?

First of all, it’s supposed to be—or should be—a modest marriage of ground meat and cheese on both sides. How do they always ruin it? With either butter or cooking oil, then they have it swim there, soaking up as much as possible while it oxidizes and rancidifies on a hot flat top.

Actually, my taste is now so reset I can’t even eat hash browns in a cafe anymore. Tastes completely rancid, and their bacon tastes like I’m eating a salt lick.

So let me show you. You need good whole gain real sourdough (i.e., actually fermented, not fraud-dough). One is with Swiss, the other Jack. If you don’t know why the dimple in the patties, you’re not qualified to grill ground meat.





As you might note, plenty of the liquid faction of fat from the cheese soaks into the bread.

There is never a need to butter them or lay them in a pool of cooking oil on a flattops.

Just don’t do that.

Since Covid killed my Cabo San Lucas vacation-rental business in 2021, this is my day job. I can't do it without you. Memberships are $10 monthly, $20 quarterly, or $65 annually. Two premium coffees per month. Every membership helps finance this work I do, and if you like what I do, please chip in. No grandiose pitches.


  1. EF on October 28, 2015 at 12:56

    Is that a harmonica in the background of the finished product pic? Nice.

  2. Harriet on October 28, 2015 at 19:49

    I was listening to a modern day academic whinge about micro aggression and wondered why they didn’t focus on real world problems – like the one you have addressed here. They need to get a proper life focussed on the good times! Good food, good company.

  3. sassysquatch on October 29, 2015 at 02:28

    Yikes that looks tasty! That little grill looks handier than shit.

    • Richard Nikoley on October 29, 2015 at 07:40

      It is. Webber is more pricey, $200 in this case, but I always have good results. Since it’s only one or two of us most of the time, a small area to pre heat and keep hot works great.

      Everything I’ve cooked comes out perfect and never has ground beef been so easy to get to a nice juicy medium. Those patties cooked in three minutes. Thick ground beef steak patties take 6-7 minutes, 4-5 on the first side, 1-2 on the flip.

  4. bb on October 29, 2015 at 20:03

    So this is life. Shut down a multi million dollar company to buy a $200 Webber and make toasted sandwiches and poke about your poop with a stick.

    Nice enough I guess but I thought there would be more.

    • EF on October 30, 2015 at 05:28

      @ bb – Wow – Probably one of the least enlightened comments on this blog. Some people are so poor that all they have is money. Clearly you took the blue pill.

      • Richard Nikoley on October 30, 2015 at 07:40

        No worries, EF. I’m livin’ over hear. Shot BBs at an encroaching coyote this morning while 3 of 4 dogs gave chase.

        Livin’. Around noon we’re packing up the Badass Beemer, driving 5 hours north to Redding to visit people we met at a B&B in La Paz Mexico a few years back and who visited at our mountain cabin last year. We were just there at the cabin for a long weekend in the pines at 4k feet two weeks ago.

        Livin’. No suburbia.

        Here’s a comment I posted on an FB post yesterday with more insight.

        “Hey Perry. I’m actually solidly with Billy’s ‘fracking drill drill drill for fracking sake’ and a complete solar / battery geek. Been living off grid since June–first in Mexico where people have been doing it since 80s and now tech makes it possible for internet, TV, all sorts of stuff. No dish, no cable, no DSL. Better. It’s on my blog for those interested. Hopeful dispensation from those who’ve never been enamored and had their craws filled with bullshit is it’s just fucking fun. I love geeking out on it and not having a power bill. BTW, Tesla has built charging stations, free for life to Tesla owners, to go SF to NY and back. Yes, I know gov involvement, but so it is with aerospace and much else. …Oh, Bea just turned on The Voice, ad free via HULU for $12 per month, internet via a dish that hits a mountain 20 miles away, into fiber, and it takes a half amp. Very good batteries are the key to this. That’s how you store the sun. (Sorry for the forever para; iPad)”

  5. Kati on October 30, 2015 at 10:46

    I know this doesn’t really have much to do with your post, but thought it might be of interest as a project: http://www.expatcucina.com/2013/04/01/homemade-garbanzo-bean-flour-pasta/

  6. bb on October 30, 2015 at 21:41

    EF, I have made far less enlightened comments than this one – on this blog even.

    The comment was more a reflection on the irrelevance of material objects however that appears to have passed you by. Sardonic humor. Google it bitch.

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