Holiday Burger Bonanza, on a Budget

Chef Kevin Roberts believes all men can cook - and no one should have to leave the house for good - greasy food.

Roberts, a native Californian with his own radio show in Southern California called "The Food Dude," is a partner and executive chef at the East Village Tavern and Bowl in San Diego. He's also the author of the greasy food Bible, "Munchies," a cookbook for men full of recipes that show non-cooks how to create their favorite greasy delights in their own kitchens. It comes to the aid of hungry men and college students everywhere.

Roberts accepted "The Early Show on Saturday Morning"'s "Chef on a Shoestring" challenge, but it was a bit different than usual.

To mark the Memorial Day holiday, we doubled our usual "Shoestring" budget to $80 - and doubled the number of people to be fed, to eight.

Kevin's blowout barbecue menu included Tavern-Style Wings, Crunchy Onion Cheeseburgers, Buffalo Burgers with Buffalo Chili Onions, a Bluecheese Burger, Pickleslaw, and for dessert, a Special Saturday Sundae Bar.


Cayenne Pepper: A hot, pungent powder made from several of various tropical CHILES that originated in French Guyana. Cayenne pepper is also called red pepper. (Source:

Worcestershire Sauce: Though this CONDIMENT was originally developed in India by the English, it takes its name from the fact that it was first bottled in Worcester, England. It's a thin, dark, rather piquant sauce used to season meats, gravies, soups and vegetable juices, and as a table condiment. It's also an essential ingredient in the popular bloody mary cocktail. Worcestershire's formula usually includes garlic, soy sauce, tamarind, onions, molasses, lime, anchovies, vinegar and various seasonings. It's widely available in supermarkets. (Source:

Sangria: The blood-red color of this beverage inspired its name, which is derived from the Spanish word for "blood." Sangría is made with red wine, fruit juices, soda water, fruit and sometimes LIQUEURS and BRANDY or COGNAC. Sangría blanco (white sangría) is made with white wine. Both are served cold over ice and make a refreshing cooler on a hot summer day. (Source:

Lychee: One of China's cherished fruits for over 2,000 years, the small (1 to 2 inches in diameter) litchi has a rough, bright red shell. The creamy white flesh is juicy, smooth and delicately sweet. It surrounds a single seed. Native to Southeast Asia, the litchi is cultivated in subtropical regions including California, Florida and Hawaii. Fresh litchis are available from June to about mid-July. Choose those with brightly colored skins free of blemishes. Place in a plastic bag and refrigerate unshelled for up to a week. Shell, seed and eat plain or as part of a fruit salad or dessert. Canned and dried litchis are available year-round. When dried they're often referred to as litchi nuts because they resemble a nut - the shell turns a dark reddish brown and the flesh becomes brown and crisp. They're eaten as a snack, much in the same way as nuts or candy. (Source:

"Early Show" Recipes Galore!


Tavern Style Wings

The trick to my tasty and healthy wings is that I boil them first in a dark beer. That knocks off a lot of the fat and makes them nice and tender, it also adds some beery flavor and gets a nice crust when grilled. Then you can throw them on the heat and get 'em nice and crispy.

1 4-pound bag of frozen or fresh chicken wings (try to get a combo of both wings and drumettes)
1/2 cup cayenne pepper sauce, Frank's Red Hot preferred
1/2 cup barbeque sauce
1 six pack of dark beer such as Guinness


Boil the wings in the dark beer in a large pot for 10 minutes. Drain water and excess fat from wings when done. Grill wings on barbecue until crispy.

Prepare sauce: Add 1/2 cup barbecue sauce to the 1/2 cup cayenne pepper sauce and mix well. Then mix the wings in the Tavern sauce and serve. Serves 4

Buffalo Burgers

A Burger is a burger until you try one of my burgers. Remember, you will want to make the patty a little bigger than the bun because the meat will shrink slightly when cooked.

Serve with your favorite toppings or have it my way, with spicy Buffalo onions and Blue cheese. It makes the burger have a terrific wing-like flavor.

1 pound of beef
Salt and pepper
Seasonings of choice-I like Old Bay or Grill Mates
4 hamburger buns
Buffalo onions (recipe above)
Crumbled Blue Cheese


Mix ground beef with salt and pepper, and, if desired, mix the meat with seasonings such as Old Bay or Grill Mates. Shape the meat into four round patties each slightly larger than a standard hamburger bun. Grill on the barbeque until desired doneness. Place the burgers on the bun, top with Buffalo onions and blue cheese.

Buffalo Chili Onions

This sauce is tangy and spicy, giving the onions you top your burger with a Tavern wing type flavor. Top the burger with blue cheese, you have a burger that anyone who likes wings will love to eat.

1/2 hot sauce, store bought, Frank's Red Hot preferred
1/2 cup of melted butter of olive oil
1/4 cup of barbeque sauce, store bought
1 tablespoon of chili powder
4 large sweet onions, cut into 1/2 inch thick slices


In a medium bowl, stir together the hot sauce, the butter, barbeque sauce and chili powder. Brush the mixture onto onion slices.

Grill the onions over medium high heat for 10 minutes, or until tender, turning and basting often with the chili mixture.