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Things you like slightly burned or burnt?

When cooking lasagna today we let it bubble just a little more than needed or was called for, just so to get some burned edges. Not the whole dish blackened - but enough to get a little bit of the sauces "overcooked" on the top edge. Know what I mean? At the same time, the same ingredients could be used in a thin noodle dish and I’d never think to add a little char to it.

Regardless, it got me thinking about other dishes where “burnt” doesn’t mean disaster.
For example, burnt ends at a BBQ place. To some it is refuse while others think it’s the best fare to order. In fact, many people seemingly prefer certain BBQ dishes with a bit of blackness on the fringes (chops come to mind), or “bark” that either can be eaten or discarded.

Taste wise, there could be an element of intense caramelization that’s appealing. It can also add some extra chewiness for those who like contrasting textures. Or in the case of bark, it can be a means to help the cooking process.

That said, I don’t mind chomping on a handful of charred popcorn kernels. Not burned popped popcorn, but the odd wretched refuse seeds that refuse to fully pop. Am I a fringe element?

What about you? Are there dishes you like a little burned? Or does it make you cringe?

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  1. When I, as a young child, would make toast for my mom, she always said that she liked the burned pieces. I thought she was just being a nice mom, but now I think she might actually have been telling the truth. I'm starting to like slightly burned toast myself. And those burned bits on wood-oven-cooked Neapolitan pizza are heaven!

    Anne

    4 Replies
    1. re: AnneInMpls

      My dad used to make his toast right on the open flame of the gas burner on our stove!! I used to like it, too!
      Also- semi burnt hot dogs on the grill are wonderful- as a matter of fact, had them last night for dinner.
      Also agree with the burnt pop corn posts.

      1. re: AnneInMpls

        Definitely burnt toast! I love a good piece of toast slightly blackened over a campfire. My dad insists on his toast being quite charred before he eats it.

        1. re: AnneInMpls

          Believe it or not, I like good BACON on the BURNT side ( crunchy of course ) - particularly in a BLT with summer fresh Peach Heirloom Tomato Slices, Crunchy/Cold Iceberg, Duke's Mayo, Sea Salt, Ground Pepper & Eli's Onion Pocket. YUM!

          1. re: AnneInMpls

            both my mom and grandma love burnt toast.
            me, not so much, but a little burnt isn't too bad.
            i do love toast!

          2. First of all, almost everything cooked directly over a campfire needs a little touch of char, especially anything cooked on a stick like a hot dog or a marshmallow. A wee touch of the black never hurt a chunk vegetable or piece of fruit cooked on the outdoor grill either.

            Now, in the kitchen, it's just not the same. Where there's not smoke folks just don't look for fire. Still, roasted tomatoes or peppers never look truly roasted without a bit of black for contrast.

            1. "the odd wretched refuse seeds that refuse to fully pop"

              Hell ya!!!

              And I thought I was the only one!!! It's been my deepest, darkest secret for 30+ years!!! (well.. that along with my abiding lust for Ernest Borgnine).

              Finally, I have met a soul mate!!!

              14 Replies
              1. re: purple goddess

                I'm also a fan of those little rejects that never fully popped-yup, they're good stuff.

                  1. re: ericalloyd

                    Burned pop-nots: YES. Ernest Borgnine: not my thing, but you might have to fight my mom for him.

                    1. re: misterbrucie

                      Burnt pop-nots, burnt rice, I'm with you on the burned bits on top of lasagna and also on macaroni & cheese...

                    2. re: ericalloyd

                      That's what they are sold as; there's a place that sells them in different flavors under that moniker.

                      1. re: ericalloyd

                        We've always called them old maids. I guess cause they were left behind.

                    3. re: purple goddess

                      There should be a group for us freaks who like the burned popcorn bits! I love them! I also like the whole bag of microwave popcorn to take on a slight blush of toastiness - really ups the total amount of taste.

                      Add me to the burned toast, hotdog, lasagne. Burned pretzels - yum! I will eat a bag of Utz Dark Specials a day when I go back east. I especially love Unique Extra Dark Splits when I can get them. Heaven!

                      I also love burned cheese; specifically, slices of American cheese cooked in a pan until the underside gets all toasty, then folding it up into a crunchy/chewy nugget of cheesiness. Was my favorite part of fried bologna sandwiches as a kid. But for all my love of the toasty, I was the only kid in my family who wouldn't eat burned marshmallows. Mine has to have a perfect level of toastiness without char.

                      1. re: Divamac

                        This board is dangerous! I had never heard of Utz's Dark Specials until I read this post but 6 bags are coming my way! I will have to search out the Unique Extra Dark Splits as well.

                        1. re: Hooda_Guest

                          I've never seen them outside of the PA-to-VA areas. But they do ship!

                          http://www.uniquesplits.com

                          These are seriously burned. Anyone else would consider these garbage. No need to thank me :)

                          1. re: Hooda_Guest

                            After learning about them here, I requested and received 3 bags of Utz's Dark Specials (and 3 of Extra Salt) for Mother's Day and broke into them last night - delicious!

                          2. re: Divamac

                            Any casserole with cheese, especially when Velveeta is an ingredient. Tuna casserole, Scalloped Potatoes, Maccaroni and Cheese.

                            1. re: Divamac

                              Oh man, the "just slightly toasty in the middle" microwave popcorn is my favorite! When the center kernels get just a little gray--not blackened. I always insist on popping the popcorn so I can leave it in a little longer since my boyfriend HATES the toasty taste. I'm pretty sure he's crazy.

                            2. re: purple goddess

                              I like the slightly popped kernels but I also like to add about 10 seconds to the cook time so there is a couple of popped pieces in the center that are slightly browned.
                              I tend to bake my bread to a internal temp of 210-215. Most artisan loaves are lacking in taste, and the extra 10 degrees make a huge difference.

                              I like my veggies cooked to al-dente, but there are very few casseroles (lasagna, etc) where cheese is involved that a few extra degrees doesn't make a huge difference in flavor.

                              The burnt ends of BBQ, and the fond on pans when I am not making a pan sauce is also a highly prized morsel.

                            3. Hey tastyjon-GREAT TOPIC!
                              Flour or corn tortillias cooked directly over a gas burner on the stove...I like the corn tortillias when the edges get all black and crispy and the rest is alll warm and yummy.
                              The flour tortillia get all bubbly and some of the bubbles get really crispy/almost burnt and then I rub a stick of butter on'em and eat 'em up-yum.

                              6 Replies
                              1. re: tatertotsrock

                                ooooooohhh yeahhhhhhh baaaaaabyyy (Use your Barry White voice)

                                And paratha and naan and roti, where the bubbles have crisped up and burnt just a weeeee bit....

                                1. re: purple goddess

                                  purple goddess,
                                  you're great! Just read your thing about the fois gras too, you keep making me laugh.
                                  I'd share some burnt bubble tortillas and naan and fois gras if I knew you could hook me up with some 9th Island Wines from Tazzie and some sparkling Pinot/Chards...I got so hooked on them while climbing and kayaking in Tasmania...the best dairy, mushrooms and carrots I've ever had in my life!

                                  1. re: tatertotsrock

                                    why, thank you taters!!!

                                    Come on over and we'll grab some King Island cheddar, some Roaring Forties tripple creme brie, some of my quince paste, a few of those wines and we'll be set like Jelly!!!

                                    Is it wrong that this thread has given me a craving for those specific burnt nodule-y bits on a tandoori lamb cutlet???

                                    1. re: purple goddess

                                      Quince Paste?
                                      Would you mind expanding on that thought dear pg.. I do enjoy your postings so much, but please I am ignorant on this thing you call "Quince".

                                      1. re: chef chicklet

                                        Quince looks like a lumpy fuzzy yellow apple. You cannot eat it raw, but when you peel, core, slice, and poach in spiced sugar syrup it is *divinely* perfumed. And decidedly pink. I love poached quince.

                                        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quince

                                        Quince paste AKA membrillo. Quinces cleaned and cooked down with sugar till very thick and concentrated. It's good served as a fruit accent to pungent cheeses. Chef Chicklet, if you feel like trying it, your profile shows you in the SF Bay Area, you should be able to find it easily.

                                2. re: tatertotsrock

                                  I do this but instead of butter, hot sauce. Usually cholula.

                                3. Have you ever had eggplant pizza? I am not talking about slabs of eggplant thrown over a pie. I am talking seasoned, breaded thin eggplant cooked into the pizza. The pieces that end up "burnt" ( in a good way ) are best.

                                  17 Replies
                                  1. re: feast

                                    You interest me strangely. Is the eggplant fried before being added to the pizza or does it do all its cooking in the oven? I do love me some good charred eggplant.

                                    1. re: feast

                                      Oh man...fried eggplant pizza. One of two foods I miss from Boston (crispy Pad Thai extra spicy with crispy chicken being the other one). It seems to be a primarily East Coast phenomenon, but I believe Village Pizzeria on Larchmont here in LA offers the fried eggplant as a topping.

                                      Feast, this may be why others may not know of the magic that is fried eggplant pizza.

                                      And Freida, the eggplant is breaded and fried before topping the saucy, chewy thin crust of which most eggplant pizzas are comprised.

                                      -----
                                      Village Pizzeria
                                      131 N Larchmont Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90004

                                      1. re: riceflour

                                        The fried eggplant pizza at Palermon is great. They put freshly fried eggplant on the raw pizza and then I tell them to make it well done. They alson do it with the eggplant parm, tell them to make it well done, where the cheese is really brown. Also with baked mac and cheese, baked rigatoni with the fried eggplant well baked real brown is great.

                                        I agree with the popcorn and well done grilled hot dogs.

                                        1. re: riceflour

                                          You can get fried eggplant pizza at Jacopo's in Beverly Hills. Mmmm..

                                          1. re: Oh Robin

                                            Thank you! I can finally get my fix...

                                        2. re: feast

                                          Burnt eggplant rocks!!!

                                          So do burnt broccoli and cauliflower... adds a new flavor dimension (and I love 'em w/ ketchup). I like a whole plate with zucchini, raddichio, yellow squash, etc.

                                          I make a spinach or broccoli souffle that I cook long enough to burn/brown the edges.

                                          Agree w/ the other recs for cheese.

                                          And white choc chip cookies (no nuts) *almost* burned around the edges and soft, gooey almost raw on the inside... I add batter to a big bowl, then nuke in the micro where the edges get crispy brown and the middle gets just beyond raw to safe to eat.

                                          1. re: Emme

                                            right on, emme! charred cauliflower is insanely good. i like to shave an entire head into little bits, toss with salt, pepper, a drop of olive oil and maybe some garlic, and spread on a baking sheet...then roast in a super-hot oven [450 or so] for about 45 minutes, stirring occasionally. the end result is a pan of crispy nuggets of concentrated sweet & savory goodness that you'd never expect.

                                            it works really well with shaved or shredded brussels sprouts too.

                                            i love using either one as a topping for salad or roasted veggies.

                                            1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                              That sounds wonderful, but how do you shave such an unwieldy veg.? Are you talking about making super-thin slices of each floret? Of the whole head? Do you use your chef's knife or...?

                                              1. re: tatamagouche

                                                it's sort of a pain, but worth it.

                                                i actually just did it last night using a chef's knife. i held the head over the baking sheet and ran the knife across the surface trying to shave off the thinnest pieces possible. just make sure you keep rotating it so you can hit the uneven surfaces from all angles. doing it this way, i was able to shave it down [and around] all the way to the core.

                                                the last time i did it i removed the core first and cut the head down into smaller pieces, then shaved them on a mandoline - it's tricky because the florets crumble so easily. i think the knife method works better, and you still get lots of crumbly bits along with the paper-thin slices, but with less risk of losing a knuckle :)

                                                regardless of which method you choose, be sure to really spread the bits out on your pan - i used 2 large baking sheets for 1 medium-large head. if the pieces are too crowded or packed in, they'll steam instead of roasting.

                                                toss [or spray well] with oil and plenty of salt & pepper...maybe some garlic [although that's tricky because if it burns it can be extremely bitter]. i've even added cumin or paprika depending on my mood - both were delicious.

                                                once in the oven [temp of about 450 degrees seems to work best], watch closely, and stir/toss a few times throughout the baking process to ensure even toasting. i wish i could give you a cooking time, but it's been different each time i've done it depending on the volume of cauliflower, number of pans, etc.

                                                btw, the exact same method works beautifully with brussels sprouts, but in terms of preparation method, definitely use a mandoline for those.

                                                enjoy!

                                                1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                                  an easier way to get cauliflower into shreds is to to cut into manageable pieces, then toss in a blender or food processor and pulse til the right size!

                                                  1. re: Emme

                                                    d-oh! [said as i smack my hand against my forehead...]

                                                    thanks emme...i can't believe i forgot that simple tip! especially since i recently used that same method to make cauliflower 'couscous.'

                                                    1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                                      No problem :-)

                                                      My other favorite kitchen gadget is the coffee bean grinder, which I use to create "high fiber bran flour," in other words, All Bran Extra Fiber ground into a flour like powder [1 cup = 1/4 cup flour].

                                                  2. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                                    Of course with brussels sprouts, you can pull off the leaves. Some high end restaurants around the SF Bay Area use that as an appropriately high labor intensive side dish. And 'les petit choux' are coming into season now too.

                                                    1. re: Louise

                                                      emme -
                                                      you're right, it's super handy. also perfect for grinding nuts, seeds & spices. i have 2 coffee grinders - one dedicated solely to coffee, and one for all the other ingredients. ok, once again i have to ask, how the heck can you [or why would you] eat all-bran with your gluten intolerance...?

                                                      louise -
                                                      the idea behind the shaved brussels sprouts is to achieve the same heavenly light & crispy texture you get with individual leaves...but without having to endure the labor-intensive task of removing each one, leaf by leaf :)

                                                      1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                                        i don't eat it anymore, but i have friends and family that eat low cal, high fiber, weight watchers style, so i use all bran flour as a sub to up fiber and lower calories and points in muffin recipes, crusts, etc. sadly, unless i choose to stay in for the evening... i do not myself indulge anymore.

                                                    2. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                                      i forgot....fennel is delicious prepared this way as well. i made some today. yum!

                                                2. re: Emme

                                                  the crusty bits of a souffle are the best! i'll fight mano a mano for those.

                                              2. I search and search for the almost popped kernels and am so disappointed when they are gone.
                                                Burnt lasagna and pizza cheese YUM!! I steal it off of other people's slices. Slight char on grilled asparagus with drizzle of balsamic.

                                                1. Platanos Muduros. Ripe fried plantains. Start with the blacker the better very ripe plantains and fry them very slowly in butter til very carmelized.
                                                  This is heaven!

                                                  1. I can't believe it took until the 12th post in this thread for somebody to mention burned bacon!! I grew up with a grandfather who would direct the restaurant to serve him burned bacon, because that was the only way to ensure it would be crispy. Needless to say, burned, crackly bits of pork, such as occur in bacon, roasted pork, hot dogs, etc. is my favorite burned thing.

                                                    Browned (but not burned) butter is a close second. You can't beat gnocci in brown butter and sage sauce.

                                                    Third place is caramelized sugar. There's a fine line between caramelized and burnt, but I like it right on that edge.

                                                    7 Replies
                                                    1. re: DanaB

                                                      Ah, we part company here. Burnt bacon is... just burnt. And crispy bacon is bacon with the fat, that is the flavour, cooked out of it. It's just salt and crackle. Crispy bacon tastes like pork rinds but has a less interesting texture.

                                                      1. re: inuksuk

                                                        I stand by my opinion. There is nothing more delectable in the world than good-quality bacon, well prepared and cooked to a crisp. The bacon is crunchy yet tender at the same time. The crumbles melt into a salty-yet-mellow and deliciously porky bit of heaven in the mouth.

                                                        Flabby bacon. Not for me.

                                                        Crispy, well-done until the fat is rendered and all you are left with are the crispy remains, color me a happy girl!

                                                        1. re: DanaB

                                                          I'm with you. I don't like floppy bacon. At home I cook it the way I like it. If I'm out somewhere I have to tell them to burn it, because people just can't get their minds around the way I want my bacon cooked otherwise.

                                                          1. re: revsharkie

                                                            Hungarians have peculiar ways with bacon which the "crispy camp" might embrace.

                                                            I've haven't tried this method for years but I may just work up to it on a good day soon - it's extreme crispy bacon.

                                                            "Droopy bacon on a stick" - this is what we did at our family reunions and summer get togethers long ago.

                                                            Cut a stem of green wood or bush about 4 feet long and about 1/2 to 3/4" thick. Lilac is good as are apple or maple suckers. Shave the smaller end to a sharp point. Make some diagonal notches for about 3 or 4 inches benind the point to serve as barbs for the slab of bacon you are about to impale on the stick.

                                                            Our folks used a hunk of slab bacon about 3 by 4 inches for this - mostly white with very little streaking and no rind. The hunk was slashed every 1/2 inches long and 3/4 inches deep along the width, and again on the reverse side along the length. Then it was impaled on the stick along the length of the slab.

                                                            We put them aside and started a medium-sized fire of hardwood. On a table or stand at hand to each peson was a thick, hand-cut slice of crusty rye bread topped with a layer of thin slices of cooking onion - the strongest possible.

                                                            The bacon was thrust into the roiling flame at the "right height" until it began to drip grease - which caused a flareup and groans and upbraiding from the adults because of soot and a Hungarian bent for precision.

                                                            By any road, when the bacon developed a load of hot, sizzling, and smokey lard, it was held over the slce of bread and onions to drip off, start cooking the onions, infuse the bread, and impart a strong smokey taste.

                                                            When the bread was sodden to our like with smokey lard and flecks of charcoal, the piece was sprinkled with paprika and salt and eaten - a new was one started. The bread, onions and renered lard were riddled with little carbon bits and the intense smoke flavouring imparted by the wood.

                                                            The process was repeated until bacon on the stick was totally drained and crisp - cracklings, but charred and smokey cracklings. Then it was eaten with a piece of rye.

                                                            Charred/burnt bits right up until the end and charred/burntr bits throughout.

                                                            Comments and variations please.

                                                            1. re: DockPotato

                                                              chicharones in latin america! fried fatback in the south. But what a creative use of the drippings!

                                                        2. re: inuksuk

                                                          I'm with you on this. I don't like crispy bacon. I use very thick cut bacon, cook it until the outside has a hint of crispiness and the inside is still a little on the chewey side. Two textures and all the flavor.

                                                        3. re: DanaB

                                                          I get my love of all things crisp and burned from my mom. ESPECIALLY BACON. Love love love it.

                                                        4. Fried onions, fried in real butter, left just a little too long, just getting a bit black on the rims of the rings - go good on top of just about anything.

                                                          3 Replies
                                                          1. re: frankiewickerpark

                                                            Ditto on the onions but I prefer olive oil.

                                                            1. re: frankiewickerpark

                                                              Again, pretty remarkable that it took till now for someone to mention burnt onions. I like to slice feal thin and fry till just about charred and serve with a rare hamburger and blue cheese. I'm salivating now, just writing about it. Ripe red bell or pimento peppers, too.

                                                              1. re: chazzerking

                                                                My dad used to make a "burnt butter" sauce for pasta with nazithra cheese and garlic. Yummy.

                                                            2. Any kind of casserole needs to be slightly burnt around the edges, esp. if cheese is involved.

                                                              Toast, of course, along with any kind of baked good shoved in a toaster oven or sandwich press.

                                                              Pizza, calzoni, and any variation thereof.

                                                              Grilled or roasted veggies.

                                                              7 Replies
                                                              1. re: piccola

                                                                For the popcorn fans your mecca can be found at popnots.com
                                                                Bet you can't eat just one!

                                                                1. re: piccola

                                                                  piccola you have it right. need my pizzas and casseroles slightly burnt - if i get delivery or restaurant pizzas i always ask them to cook them extra here in VA or else they get that gross soggy bottom. roasted & grilled veggies need a GOOD carmelization. only thing you forgot is that i agree with whoever above said hot dogs/sausages on the grill and barbecue.
                                                                  and i'm realizing as i write this that i like a lot of food "burnt"! :)

                                                                  1. re: piccola

                                                                    Adding on to my own list:

                                                                    Plantains
                                                                    Roasted nuts or chickpeas
                                                                    Rice (the crispy baked-on crust)
                                                                    Veggie burgers

                                                                    A weird one: Cheerios. On a whim, I decided to dry-toast some cereal in a skillet before mixing it into yogurt (hey, it works for oats, and what's Cheerios made of?). Seriously awesome. Give it a shot - it only takes about 30 seconds, and it makes a huge difference.

                                                                    1. re: piccola

                                                                      Holy crap. What a fantastic idea.

                                                                      1. re: charmedgirl

                                                                        It's crazy what you think of at 3 a.m. Let me know what you think.

                                                                        1. re: piccola

                                                                          Yes, the brain does some strange and wonderful things when you're not too concerned about making sense. Nice one.

                                                                      2. re: piccola

                                                                        i am with you on the rice. i love that burnt brown rice at the bottom of the bowl.. usually get it with a cheapo rice maker left on too long.

                                                                        i also like whole fried fish a little burnt sometimes.. so you can eat the fins. mmmm

                                                                    2. I cannot eat veggies steamed but if you sautee or roast then till they get a char I'm often happy. Brussels sprouts, sliced thinly and then sauteed till they're crispy and almost blackened on the edges (even better w/ a little pancetta or bacon). Cauliflower, cut down into smaller florets and roasted on a baking sheet till you get some charred bits, w/ some olive oil (and sprinkled w/ some currants and pine nuts). That's how to get me to eat my vegetables.

                                                                      5 Replies
                                                                      1. re: Frodnesor

                                                                        I roast brussels sprouts and make sure that a couple of the leaves fall off and burn. They become crispy and taste like potato chips!

                                                                        I also like my bacon burnt to a crisp.

                                                                        1. re: Kagey

                                                                          OHHHHHH! My fave too. I stand in the kitchen and gobble down those little crispy leaves....mmmmmmmmm!

                                                                          1. re: DLAOKC

                                                                            I do this, too! I cook brussels sprouts in an iron skillet, and eat all the little crispy bits and leaves out of the pan before I let my husband have any. Yum.

                                                                        2. re: Frodnesor

                                                                          Throw in some baby carrots too -- you will not be disappointed!

                                                                        3. Marshmallows! Burned to a blackend crisp on the outside, all gooey and delicious on the inside. When we were younger, my sister and I used to stick big marshmallows on a fork and roast them over candles in the kitchen. good times.

                                                                          4 Replies
                                                                          1. re: jaime79

                                                                            Yes! I used to 'toast' them by lighting the whole marshmallow on fire and letting it burn for a good 30 seconds or so....so good.

                                                                            1. re: Bat Guano

                                                                              Me too! A fine crisp crust on the outside, molten on the inside. Yum yum.

                                                                            2. re: jaime79

                                                                              Great call Jaime on the marshmallows. I let them burn until it is nothing but char, let it cool a bit, and dip into cool whip.

                                                                              1. re: yankeefan

                                                                                dipped in cool whip? interesting. i'll have to give it a whirl.

                                                                            3. I have to agree with those who have mentioned the unpopped popcorn kernels, though they are even better when coming out of a bag of kettle corn. Yum.
                                                                              I also agree with the lasagna and will add as one of my personal burnt favorites the end pieces on a meatloaf. Not necessarily burnt black, but crisp, caramelized, and almost chewy. Yum, again!

                                                                              1. grilled cheese sandwich!!!
                                                                                made with white bread, kraft single, salted butter. burned on the edges...dark/golden in the centre. lots of heinz on the side.

                                                                                panini also has to have the burned grill marks and shepherds pie has to have the tips of the mashed potato burned....sometimes i use the broiler if its not getting dark enough for me.

                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                1. re: rayrayray

                                                                                  i second the grilled cheese sandwich. i remember my mom making them for me as a kid, with sharp cheddar, wheat bread, and TONS of butter (which is why, i think, the burnt bread tasted so good).

                                                                                2. Sweet potato french fries with enough seasoning all over them to give it that nice, extra char.

                                                                                  1. "the odd wretched refuse seeds that refuse to fully pop"

                                                                                    We call them 'old maids' and I love them too.
                                                                                    Rub them in the buttery salt in the bottom of the bowl and crunch away!

                                                                                    1. the crusty bits of macaroni and cheese - we always fight for them. the crusty bits of any casserole type thing really.

                                                                                        1. bbq chicken wings. korean kalbi.

                                                                                          1. I can't believe no one has said meatloaf. The burnt, slightly crisp edges of the meatloaf are the best part!

                                                                                            5 Replies
                                                                                            1. re: JungMann

                                                                                              I beat you to the meatloaf, but I TOTALLY agree. Also, planning on going to my fave greek places for gyro tonight and always ask for it very very very very exceptionally crisp. Nothing better.

                                                                                              1. re: ArikaDawn

                                                                                                Oh I'm with you on burnt lamb, though I don't go so far as crisp! But some char definitely compliments the flavor of a marinated lamb.

                                                                                                1. re: JungMann

                                                                                                  Yes, not so much burnt, but crisp around the edges. Anyhow, it didn't matter as I ended up having indian last night. I made special note to enjoy the darkened bubbles on the garlic naan and particularly enjoyed the onoin bhaji one of which was overdone and quite heavenly.

                                                                                                  1. re: ArikaDawn

                                                                                                    My father liked his rotis somewhat burnt, which I always hated. That awful smell and taste invaded even the unburnt sections of the bread like a plague. Yuck!

                                                                                              2. re: JungMann

                                                                                                ooh yeah!
                                                                                                definitely the corners slightly burnt!
                                                                                                mmm.
                                                                                                i also like the slightly burnt corners of brownies. :)

                                                                                              3. Can't believe no one has mentioned this yet. Burnt crispy corrned beef hash under my poached egg.

                                                                                                3 Replies
                                                                                                1. re: shaebones

                                                                                                  Fried eggs sunny side up cooked in very hot fat so the underside and edges of the white go brown and crispy and the yolk is still runny.

                                                                                                  Open faced grilled cheese (Welsh Rarebit) with the cheese bubbly and burned on top.

                                                                                                    1. re: shaebones

                                                                                                      classic new jersey diner hash browns. i'm not talking about corned beef hash. hash brown potatoes, a.k.a. home fries - cubed or shredded with onions, tons of salt & pepper, & paprika. hot, crispy, charred hash browns with cold ketchup...yum.

                                                                                                      come to think of it, i generally like my potatoes with a lot of color. nothing worse than soggy or undercooked fries - i always go for the super-crispy burned ones. oh, and sweet potatoes or yams...the oozy sweet, syrupy goodness that caramelizes when they're just starting to burn...

                                                                                                    2. Definitely a great topic!

                                                                                                      I like some good char marks on anything that's meant to be put on the grill (except hamburgers) - hot dogs, corn, vegetables.And by good char marks...I mean at least 50% black. Mmmm....I also really like burnt cookies!

                                                                                                      5 Replies
                                                                                                      1. re: Chew on That

                                                                                                        Ooh, I thought I was the only one who liked burnt cookies. For some reason I prefer a nice crunchy cookie that's browned a bit than a fully moist one.

                                                                                                        1. re: queencru

                                                                                                          Yep. My mom's chocolate chip cookie recipe, which I still use, says to bake the cookies for 8-10 minutes. This makes them nice and crispy, but not overly brown. I used to always leave one pan of them in the oven for 10-12 minutes, for my dad and me.

                                                                                                          1. re: queencru

                                                                                                            Although I can't stand chocolate (yes, I'm weird), I love overdone cookies with butterscotch chips and big walnut chunks. Tastes like it was made with brown butter. Delectable.

                                                                                                          2. re: Chew on That

                                                                                                            Yes, definately cookies. Pizza crust, too. The burn adds a whole extra dimension.

                                                                                                            1. re: Chew on That

                                                                                                              I'm 46 and my mom still shows love by burning a few peanut butter cookies for the flight home.

                                                                                                            2. burnt lasagna? YES! black hotdogs. YES! and the edges of the brownies are the best part!

                                                                                                              12 Replies
                                                                                                              1. re: ppalm

                                                                                                                Marshmellows. Check.
                                                                                                                Lasagna ends. Check.
                                                                                                                Hotdogs. Check.
                                                                                                                Pie crust. Check.
                                                                                                                Cheese. Check.

                                                                                                                1. re: pancake

                                                                                                                  sometimes I just put the cheese in anon stick skillet, cookk until charred, and eat with crackers! guily secret.

                                                                                                                  1. re: macca

                                                                                                                    We used to put slices of American cheese right on the griddle. Such a simple guilty pleasure.

                                                                                                                    Now let's talk about pretzels - Unique Dark or Utz's Dark Specials, especially paired with a good quality Philadelphia-style vanilla bean ice cream. Crunchy, salty, creamy, sweet, with the burnt tang - This should be a food group all of its own. How prescient for someone to have realized the market for burnt snack food!

                                                                                                                    1. re: wandasue

                                                                                                                      Love the pretzel idea- now if you add chocolate to that mix, you may just have the perfect food!

                                                                                                                      1. re: macca

                                                                                                                        there is an ice cream shop I found that makes the best milkshakes- and my favorite is chocolate covered pretzel-- I keep meaning to try at home sometime with the "dark" Utz & dark chocolate & some great ice cream.

                                                                                                                          1. re: redheadteacher

                                                                                                                            Utz snacks are made in Pennsylvania and are widely available in the mid-Atlantic region. You can also order online: http://utzsnacks1.stores.yahoo.net/in....

                                                                                                                      2. re: wandasue

                                                                                                                        wandasue, i think you and i grew up in the same family!

                                                                                                                        1. re: wandasue

                                                                                                                          Unique Extra Dark Splits! Best pretzel ever!

                                                                                                                          1. re: stephen

                                                                                                                            You can order these marvelous pretzels ( thin & crunchy, not soft, with great character and a number of styles and flavors) from www.uniquesplits.com.

                                                                                                                    2. re: ppalm

                                                                                                                      o-o-o-o-o-h.... burnt wienie sandwiches......

                                                                                                                      1. re: ppalm

                                                                                                                        http://astore.amazon.com/davidlebovis...

                                                                                                                        ^^^looks like David Lebovitz shares your love for brownie edges-lol. For me it depends on the recipe. I don't like the edges on just any brownies. Some are better eaten from the center.

                                                                                                                      2. As a kid, one of my favorites was an open-faced grilled cheese sandwich using muenster on a hearty Jewish rye. The flavor of the cheese changes completely went toasted - or in this case, broiled - and the entire surface turns into a big black bubble. That's how I knew it was done. Probably my first introduction to cooking and I still prefer any cheese dish to be a bit on the crispy side. Same goes for nachos.

                                                                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                                                                        1. re: srcusa

                                                                                                                          Open faced muenster sandwich!! I also grew up making these, but on a rye or everything bagel. I also liked to add a slice or two of avocado to the end result. Haven't had one in years.....

                                                                                                                          Since I'm typing anyway....
                                                                                                                          1. Not only the burnt popcorn kernels, but I love the dark, but not quite burned pieces of fully popped corn.
                                                                                                                          2. The burnt ends of meatloaf, briskit, or sausage links
                                                                                                                          3. There is nothing like a burnt hot dog.

                                                                                                                        2. Each Thanksgiving we have to have two pans of cornbread dressing. My dad, my son, and I want our dressing cooked dry with lots of brown on the edges. Everyone else wants moist dressing that is ever so slightly brown on top.

                                                                                                                          1 Reply
                                                                                                                          1. re: Sister Sue

                                                                                                                            This is a fantastic topic. Slightly burnt chocolate cookies are delicious, IMO. Also, charred pizza crust is great. And, if you can believe it, toasting matzoh until it's just a tiny bit burnt makes for a wonderful snack.

                                                                                                                            Oh, and fried macaroni that's slightly burnt and served with pot roast and gravy is the best.

                                                                                                                          2. Lots of Asians love to eat the burned portion of cooked rice. Now, however, not so much because of the use of rice cookers and the fear of stomach cancer.

                                                                                                                            1. Burnt fries, any kind (someone already mentioned sweet potato fries). Mom and I always fight over the black ones.

                                                                                                                              1. I love this meeting of the Afficionadoes of Slightly Burnt Food. The first thing I can remember enjoying that was too done was a batch of waffles. When I developed a more attentive palate I realized that many things are improved by being a bit too done. Not everything, mind you, but more than most people realize.

                                                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                                                1. re: jillp

                                                                                                                                  Sign me up for this group....slightly burned meat loaf, bbq chicken, bacon, mac and cheese, hash browns, onions, pop corn, lasagna.....I love them all!

                                                                                                                                  My family thinks that I'm being nice when I serve them food from a hot dish. Actually, I'm saving the burnt edges or topping for myself!

                                                                                                                                  1. re: bkhuna

                                                                                                                                    I love my home-fries and hash-browns slightly burned. Got to the point where the guy at the diner would finish my order for me " One fried egg and cheddar on a roll with hash browns very well done...(Him): Almost burned.

                                                                                                                                    1. re: bkhuna

                                                                                                                                      Whenever we have those fat stubby little Fanestil weenies cooked on the grill, they have to be a little burnt, and cooked till the casings split open (which, of course, drips grease down onto the coals, so fire blazes up and the weenies get even more burnt).

                                                                                                                                    2. Well, burnt potato chips, the darker the better. Of course.

                                                                                                                                      1. Thought of another one that I had last night. A really good knish with the breading on the outside nice and charred. Dip that bad boy in ketchup and let the potato do the work. delicious.

                                                                                                                                        1. One of my favorite snacks is an english muffin, preferably, or a piece of bread with a slice of american cheese (not the slices wrapped in plastic kind) and placed under the broiler until it bubbles up and burns a nice lovely brown on top. I love my burnt cheese!!!

                                                                                                                                          2 Replies
                                                                                                                                          1. re: wendy8869

                                                                                                                                            there's something so uniquely delicious about a slightly burned english muffin. must be the nooks & crannies :) spread some butter on it and let it soak into the crispy edges...heaven.

                                                                                                                                            1. re: wendy8869

                                                                                                                                              I like just about any kind of bread with the butter slightly browned...you know how it gets when you put butter on top and broil it until the buttered part gets bubbly and then a tad browned, and the unbuttered edges start to burn--that's really yummy!! :-)

                                                                                                                                            2. Potato chips. You know, the ones that escape the quality control and show up as brown treasures in the otherwise uniform bags occasionally. Why they don't just reverse the process I don't know!

                                                                                                                                              Also charred bones eg. the end of a lamb shank.

                                                                                                                                              6 Replies
                                                                                                                                              1. re: bishopsbitter

                                                                                                                                                That's why I will always be a Wise chip guy (although I really need to 86 the chips!).

                                                                                                                                                I like a bit of char on asparagus, hot dogs and corn. On some Indian and Mexican dishes, I find taking fried onions past gold well into brown increases the depth of flavor of the base of whatever I'm making.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: Panini Guy

                                                                                                                                                  Yep! Burnt potato chips are awesome...Wise USED to have some in every bag but everything is so sanitized now that I've not seen many at all, though like Panini Guy, I've really cut down on my p.c. consumption recently and now use Garden Herb Triscuits or Low-Salt Almonds when I need something crunch & salty.

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Val

                                                                                                                                                    I still see them - maybe it's now 2%-3% as opposed to almost 10%, but they're still in Wise bags we've been getting here. I blame Lays for the marginalization of dark chips.

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Panini Guy

                                                                                                                                                      Remember when they had a little window on the top of Wise chips, and you could look at them all to pick out the darkest bag? That was one of the first food preferences my husband told me when we first met, that I had to look at every bag before choosing one. Once we got a bag that was all dark, he was in heaven, can you believe I remember that from 30 years ago! And once we got a whole potato, that wasn't cut through, it was just fanned out, nowadays someone would have sold it on Ebay.
                                                                                                                                                      We don't eat potato chips much anymore, but he would never touch Lays, even though I now get them for free. He probably blames them too.

                                                                                                                                                2. re: bishopsbitter

                                                                                                                                                  burned ruffles potato chips were always a happy surprise.

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: bishopsbitter

                                                                                                                                                    the hometown brand in detroit is bettermade. i have not been in a very long time but you used to be able to go to the store in the plant on gratiot and buy "rainbow" chips - bags of light & dark brown, well done chips.

                                                                                                                                                    i am also a big fan of burnt cheese (pizza, mac-n-cheese, etc.), well done french fries, and well charred pork shoulder or brisket after hours of smoking on the que.

                                                                                                                                                  2. i agree, great topic!
                                                                                                                                                    burnt: hot dogs, toast, wood-oven pizza, grilled vegetables, fried sweet plantains,

                                                                                                                                                    potstickers, grilled bagels (on a diner grill) well done are very good.

                                                                                                                                                    1. marshmellows!!! Mmmmm! and definitely brownies....and anything with cheese on it. I also love burnt lasagna and toast....and popcorn.

                                                                                                                                                      1. bacon. i like my bacon *almost* burned. YUM. HATE floppy bacon! :)

                                                                                                                                                        3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                        1. re: jujuthomas

                                                                                                                                                          my sister has been ordering her bacon "burnt" for years. We grew up with crunchy bacon and it was hard to learn to cook it the way you are "supposed to". Nice to see we are not as weird as I thought!

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: ppalm

                                                                                                                                                            There's actually some stereotype out there that all Americans like really burnt bacon. I don't remember where I was in some forum with tons of people complaining that crispy bacon was disgusting and they didn't understand why Americans loved it so. I'm not a fan of floppy bacon at all!

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: ppalm

                                                                                                                                                              Yeah, it's is difficult to cook bacon properly--I don't like mine floppy, but I don't like it burnt either....but it's so hard to reach that fine line if cooked perfectly that if I have to, I'll settle for "burnt".

                                                                                                                                                          2. I my house growning up, we didn't call things burnt -- they were "well done". My father orders pretty much everything in restaurants (except his steak) "well done".

                                                                                                                                                            Now it has basically become a family joke with him. The classic time was when he called Domino's to order a pizza (I think this must have been about 20+ years ago when Domino's first opened in our area), and he ordered the pizza "well done". He had no idea that the pizza basically went through an oven on a timed conveyor belt to be cooked! We still laugh about that.

                                                                                                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                            1. re: valerie

                                                                                                                                                              Other places have these no-brainer conveyer belt ovens as well. I wonder what would happen if you asked for two passes? It might be really nice or too cooked. We'll have to experiment.

                                                                                                                                                            2. Well done toast. This was hillarious when I was in Japan as their toast is barely crispy on the outside and certainly not even the palest shade of tan. How hard it was to convince them that I sincerely enjoyed browned toast. The weird foreigner strikes again.

                                                                                                                                                              1. I prefer overdone toast to underdone, and slightly burnt is best.

                                                                                                                                                                Most of you will kill me but I like my meat (steaks and burgers) overdone and slightly burnt.

                                                                                                                                                                fried onions too.

                                                                                                                                                                oh and fried tomatoes till nearly burnt then add eggs and scramble - delicious.

                                                                                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                1. re: smartie

                                                                                                                                                                  My dad loves his steak burnt too....whenever we would go somewhere it was so embarassing that he would request his steak "burnt to death"...:rolleyes: ;-)

                                                                                                                                                                  He also likes his burgers that way--which I suppose, I like my burgers cooked too, and if I have to take them burnt to get them cooked, I'll do it! :)

                                                                                                                                                                2. The bottom layer of rice in a hot stone bibimbap. Gotta take special care not to bother that layer until you are almost done eating. Nice charred and crunchy pieces of rice.

                                                                                                                                                                  1. Burnt popcorn kernels - CHECK!
                                                                                                                                                                    Burnt chocolate chip cookies - CHECK!
                                                                                                                                                                    Burnt toast (especially the heel of the bread) - CHECK!
                                                                                                                                                                    Burnt french fries - CHECK!
                                                                                                                                                                    Burnt meat loat edges - CHECK!
                                                                                                                                                                    Burnt hot dogs or brats - CHECK!
                                                                                                                                                                    Burnt cheese - CHECK!
                                                                                                                                                                    Burnt lasagna corners - CHECK!
                                                                                                                                                                    Burnt french fries/potato chips - CHECK!
                                                                                                                                                                    Burnt brownie edges (dipped in vanilla ice cream) - CHECK!
                                                                                                                                                                    Burnt pizza toppings - CHECK!

                                                                                                                                                                    Anything burned I suppose...

                                                                                                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: wino22

                                                                                                                                                                      Nothing better than a burnt grilled cheese dipped in steaming hot tomato soup.

                                                                                                                                                                      Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm....

                                                                                                                                                                    2. A nice strip of burned fat on a steak, charred crispy and crunchy- steak rinds.
                                                                                                                                                                      Blackened marshmallows where you bite through the char and they crack and the creamy marshmallow oooozes out and burns your chin.
                                                                                                                                                                      And of course the cheese run off in the panini press that escapes from the pressed hot bread and crisps up like little lace oblong cookies, where you pick it up, and pop it in your mouth...mmmm.

                                                                                                                                                                      1. I used to have a boss that wouldn't eat cookies or brownies unless they were burnt. She loved them. My personal fave is burnt cinnamon toast, when the sugar gets crunchy. Also lacy burnt bits of cheese and the burnt edges of the lasagne.

                                                                                                                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: potterybliss

                                                                                                                                                                          oh, those crispy, chewy burned brownie edges. yum.

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                                                                                                                                                            Yes!! I always dig out the corner pieces, they are my favorite!! :D

                                                                                                                                                                        2. I agree with almost everyone on here. Never realized that I like so many burnt things until I read all of your responses!

                                                                                                                                                                          Popcorn kernels (the way they crunch is just so satisfying)
                                                                                                                                                                          Bacon
                                                                                                                                                                          Cheese (especially on top of the cheese bread at Paul Bakery)
                                                                                                                                                                          Rice in stone bowl bibimbap (I press it and let it sit a little to long without stirring to get nice bits)
                                                                                                                                                                          pah-jun (Korean pancakes, I even learned the Korean work for "extra crispy")
                                                                                                                                                                          French fries and has browns (they are called hash BROWNS for a reason!)
                                                                                                                                                                          Burnt fried eggs (as a kid I would turn the pan up to high when frying eggs so the bottom would get crisp and the top would stay runny)
                                                                                                                                                                          Hot dogs (Yocco's style)
                                                                                                                                                                          Lamb bits that get burnt on the grill (well I guess any kind of fat from meat that gets burnt)

                                                                                                                                                                          3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: taryn

                                                                                                                                                                            Taryn, I'm with you on the eggs. Crispy, lacy edges. Yum!

                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: prunefeet

                                                                                                                                                                              Me too! That's why I like to order eggs in restaurants, because they often burn them a little. While other people complain about browned omelets, I dig in.

                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: taryn

                                                                                                                                                                              OH! I agree on the hash browns--they don't have to be "burnt" per se, but they DO have to be crunchy and well-browned! I will always leave the mushy hash browns on my plate after I've picked all the crispy parts out!!! Drives my hubby crazy! ;-D

                                                                                                                                                                            3. Great thread.
                                                                                                                                                                              When my husband and I first dated seriously and we were over with family for dinners, both mothers would not serve thecrisy, charred piece of homemade lasagna. It did not take a long time for him to tell them he liked the corner piece, with noodle exposed (no topping) that was black and crispy. Now, when it is just us two, I actually preslice the lasagna before baking and after refrigerating and then put the oven on broil for the last several minutes so we get a whole blackened top. Precutting avoids me trying to saw through the crispy section while hot.
                                                                                                                                                                              Love also..popcorn kernels, hotdogs, egg fried in olive oil(memories....), marshmallows and cheese.

                                                                                                                                                                              Grandparents used to make the best open faced cheese grill. Homemade bread with a generously thick hand cut sliced of emmenthal. Broil (little black is good) top with sliced tomato.

                                                                                                                                                                              Quesadilla parts where the cheese oozes out and attaches itself to the outside of the tortilla and it crisps up together.

                                                                                                                                                                              Oven roasted yams or sweet potatoes; even black they have a sticky chewiness that tastes almost like savory candy.

                                                                                                                                                                              The bottom of homemade bread with a little char; yum.
                                                                                                                                                                              Pancetta a little overdone.
                                                                                                                                                                              In Italy one day we had (they were embarrassed to serve us this) in a cast iron pan, lay down overlapping slices of friulano cheese and prosciutto cooked over an open flame. Serve with homemade thin crust pizza (a little char around the outside). Between the char on the outside of the pizza, outside of cheese and outside of prosicutto - heaven.

                                                                                                                                                                              Skin on a pig (pig roast), skin on a prime rib roast, skin on lamb roast ....hmmm...I see a recurring theme here.

                                                                                                                                                                              Onions fried in olive oil.

                                                                                                                                                                              Fingerling potatoes in a foil packet on the BBQ (halved, season with sea salt, pepper, rosemary, olive oil and dot with butter). The cut side down that is facing the grill longest is delicious when overcooked.

                                                                                                                                                                              Heavily sauced ribs (where the sauce dries up and again...like candied) where the corners can be black and sauce dries up.

                                                                                                                                                                              1. How could I have forgotten my FAVORITE burnt/browned thing from childhood?

                                                                                                                                                                                Sweet rice...
                                                                                                                                                                                1 part white rice
                                                                                                                                                                                2 parts milk (skim generally in our house)
                                                                                                                                                                                1 - 1 1/2 parts white sugar
                                                                                                                                                                                Put in rice cooker, and as it cooks, the most wonderful, luxurious, orgasmic brown crust forms on the bottom... I used to have to split it with my nanny... Bless her for introducing me to this wondrous food group.

                                                                                                                                                                                1. Only one thing I know of that is much better slightly burned, and that is pepperoni.

                                                                                                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                  1. Great topic!!!
                                                                                                                                                                                    Marshmallows (omg.)
                                                                                                                                                                                    Salmon Skin
                                                                                                                                                                                    Onions
                                                                                                                                                                                    Rice in a stone bowl
                                                                                                                                                                                    corn bread
                                                                                                                                                                                    potatoes
                                                                                                                                                                                    bruschetta toast
                                                                                                                                                                                    broiled tofu (black crispy edges)
                                                                                                                                                                                    korean bbq squid
                                                                                                                                                                                    pancakes
                                                                                                                                                                                    pizza crust

                                                                                                                                                                                    4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: monalisawoman

                                                                                                                                                                                      Golly monalisawoman,
                                                                                                                                                                                      With that list, I could enjoy myself all day long!...it actually looks like a pretty good spread of snacks for a day in front of the TV...yum!

                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: tatertotsrock

                                                                                                                                                                                        and i even forgot one.... burnt pie crust.
                                                                                                                                                                                        i'm so distracted by thinking of burnt things, i can't get any work done.

                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: monalisawoman

                                                                                                                                                                                        Salmon - yes

                                                                                                                                                                                        I cook small portions in a convection toaster oven and the goal is always to get some char on the skin.

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: tastyjon

                                                                                                                                                                                          if you take your burnt bits THAT seriously... go to a japanese restaurant & order hamachi kama. It's broiled yellow tail collar. They just season it with salt & pepper, & broil. But those charred edges, & burnt skin...mmmmmmmm. And licking the bones clean...mmmmm. Usually the dipping sauce is pretty good too.

                                                                                                                                                                                      3. don't eat this anymore but my grandma used to make grieven [or gribenes] with rendered chicken fat and burned bits of chicken skin and burned onions. heart attack in a bowl.

                                                                                                                                                                                        also, my mom burns the outside of her salmon croquettes and piles burned onion on top. yum.

                                                                                                                                                                                        the burned noodles on top of a sweet noodle kugel.

                                                                                                                                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: ericalloyd

                                                                                                                                                                                          great call...the crispy noodles on the top of the kugel are the only ones worth eating!

                                                                                                                                                                                        2. a few things come to mind. I like corn roasted over an open flame until some kernels are brown/black. I like the burnt kernels of popcorn. Blackend eggplant on the grill gives great smoky flavor to baba ganoush and I like some of the charred skin blended into the dip.

                                                                                                                                                                                          2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: scubadoo97

                                                                                                                                                                                            OH YES!! Slightly burned corn on the cob is FABULOUS!! Has to be done on the grill though, or it doesn't have quite the same effect--IMO. I think the charred pieces really bring out the sweetness in the corn, but maybe that's just me??

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Farmgirl22

                                                                                                                                                                                              I with you, especailly with chili lime butter on them!

                                                                                                                                                                                          2. the black bits on grilled fresh calamari are MINE

                                                                                                                                                                                            daaaaaaaaarkly sauteed onions people? no?
                                                                                                                                                                                            and yeah, realllly dark toast
                                                                                                                                                                                            and any roasted veggies, casseroles edges, and the cheesey edges and top of french onion soup

                                                                                                                                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: orangewasabi

                                                                                                                                                                                              Yes to the onions, also fantastic are whole scallions that are grilled until mostly blackened, so good! And roasted shallots that have some char, man, I'm getting hungry.

                                                                                                                                                                                            2. I find this post very encouraging because it appears that we are in a time of "kid-friendly" undercooked baked goods (at least). I was at my go-to bread shop to get a baguette. I was asked by the clerk "ok sir now would you want one like this or like this" (she'd shown me a beige baguette then a golden brown one). I responded "the fully baked one please".
                                                                                                                                                                                              Now I admit when I was younger I did like the white bready doughy non-crust of a Pizzaria Uno deep dish pizza. Now though it's all about the 800 degree F wood oven and a touch of the black around the edge of a pie.

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. French fries that are over done are great !!

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. I love lasagna and baked ziti with a little burnt edges (actually anything with noodles and cheese with crispy edges), my scrambled eggs crunchy, and my Kraft American Cheese singles on toast made in a toaster oven with large black bubbles on top...not to mention crispy, crunchy french fries dipped in brown gravy. I also set my marshmallows on fire when I make s'mores.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: MrsT

                                                                                                                                                                                                    I also forgot burnt "edges" off a pork shoulder or beef brisket that has been slow barbecued and basted for about 10-12 hours so that it is good and burned and crusty. Arthur Bryant's in KC has perfected the burnt edge.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. Seriously cool topic.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    I love heavy char on sauced ribs. I like my meat charred-rare.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    A crispy, brown bottom is a must for good paella IMO.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    My family eats "fried" spaghetti. This is best with homemade noodles and sauce but is also O.K. with any leftover pasta. You have to sauce your left over pasta before you put it in the fridge. After sitting over night, the pasta absorbs most of the liquid from the sauce. You heat up a skillet, coat the bottom with olive oil and then smoosh your left over spaghetti into the pan. Cook until charred and then flip and char the other side. Mmmmmmm charred tomato sauce!

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. My secret vice is Cheezit crackers - no other than Sunshine Cheezits! But I'll throw out the box if they aren't brown around the edges.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. I just found this topic....and I have to add that sometimes I'll heat my leftover spaghetti & sauce in a pot on the stove so it will get crispy parts.
                                                                                                                                                                                                        I also love crispy rice (crispy most anything!).

                                                                                                                                                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: crn

                                                                                                                                                                                                          It's also great sauteed in butter (no extra sauce, just what's coating it already) until crispy. My father's favorite leftover.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. MMMMM...the "bark" from a smoked pork butt (shoulder). Looks like you burnt the whole thing but the wonderful smoke flavor is in the "bark"!

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. Marshmallows - always! They have to flame so you blow them out and then they're bubbling on the outside and melting on the inside. You can have whatever fancy dessert you want, I'll take a flaming marshmallow any day.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. Perhaps someone has said this already but slightly scorched thin crust pizza from a wood fired oven.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. I hate wiggly bacon, mine has to be burnt to a crisp, so that it almost melts in your mouth.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                I love the burned potato chips and french fries that no one wants to eat. I like the burned edges of a fried egg. And I love to pick out the burned cheese the runs off a grilled cheese or quesadilla and eat it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. Like burned: skin of a grilled Black Mission fig.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. I love PASTA PIE BURNT - the left over Angel Hair & Marinara that you can't seem to throw down the disposal. Throw an egg, tons of freshly grated parmesan mixing both with the left over pasta. Over high heat & with your best EVOO, fry the pasta mixture until crispy. It's YUM-YUM!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. Who knew there were so many people who like burnt stuff?? My first thought was hot dogs but I realize that I like most meat with charred edges. My husband makes barbecued ribs that have the yummiest burnt parts.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I also like green peppers and red peppers grilled till they're a little black.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Love to make cheese toast in the toaster oven broiler until the cheese is about half black.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. Bread. I always select the darkest crust and toast it to a slight char.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Pizza
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Fish skin grilled. Slightly burnt to crisp edges.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Fried rice/fried noodles
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Marshmallow.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Tarocake. A dimsum.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        French fries. Or anything with potatoes.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Any baked pasta dish with cheese on top.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Tofu skin deep fried to slight burnt.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        chicken skin.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        bacon, pork belly
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        nuts

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. I'm a burnt-edges person when it comes to pancakes and omlets. Just a slight burned (or darker) edge on them.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I also like BBQed ribs with a slight burn on them. From the sauce of course.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          www.naturalspecialtyfoodsmemo.blogspo...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. I love burnt cheese.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            The best is on Italian dishes with red sauce topped with melted mozzarella or provolone cheese.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Spinach manicotti, lasagne, baked ziti or chicken parmesan all turn out better if left
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            under the broiler a few minutes past too long.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I love it when a little pool of cheese is left on the cookie sheet. Let it cool for a few minutes, peel it away like a fruit roll-up and yumalicious!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. When I do a tray of home made enchiladas -- chicken, beef, pork, suiza, doesn't matter what kind -- I HAVE to let them bake long enough that the tortillas at the ends of the enchiladas are dried out, curled, and crunchy! Yeah, a bit on the brown side too. My favorite parts! Then, if there are any leftover enchiladas, next morning they get fried until their bottoms are crisply browned and served with a poached or sunny side up egg on top. A little sour cream never hurt anybody either...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. A Philadelphia style rib eye steak Black and Blue.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. Roasted marcona almonds (done in the microwave till dark)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Toast - thin wholemeal bread - toasted till burnt over/under a flame (almost charred), spread while hot with salted butter, left to go cold in a toast rack (so it doesn't go too soggy) - then more soft butter spread on (the original butter having soaked in and vanished). Add a thin scraping of lime marmalade.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. omlettes and frittatas

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. hot dogs, marshmellows and microwave POPCORN slightly burned - YUMMMM. I'm drooling thinking about it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Must be the caveman gene.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      My dad called the unpopped kernels "old maids".

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      South of Miami on Old Cutler a pizza place would make us eggplant pizza and he'd fry an entire eggplant sliced lengthwise on the spot, put it on the pizza and pop it in the oven. AMAZING!!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. Rice!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        its always been a prized food in both my grandmother's households (Cuban/Dominican), and all 3 latin caribbean islands have a special name for it...its generally on the menu of authentic restaurants...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        raspa, pegado, con con...the cripspy burnt bottom layer in the rice pot...mmm

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: TSQ75

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Persian rice has this too. Mmmmmm so good. Similar to burnt potatoes. They have dark potato chips, even.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          The other day, I discovered crispy bleu cheese from a baking pan. Not burnt, but soo good toasty.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. Cheese!! Mozzerella especially! I like the cheese to be browned on the edges, instead of just melted...Hotdogs!! They have to be blackened on the grill or I won't eat them...Marshmallows!! I love it when they catch on fire when you roast them, because the inside is fully melted and gooey, and you can always pick off hte burnt layer if you don't want to eat it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I can't think of anything else I particularly care for that is burned or slightly burned.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. black olives baked on top of a casserole--how the flavor transforms is amazing!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            ....and definelty, very brown french fries--the best

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. Hello, I am new to this site and feel right at home already! Who knew so many people had a love for burnt cheese, pizza, toast, pretzels (just ordered some from uniquesplits.com, thank you divamac), and wow....WOW...burnt triscuits! My husband thinks I'm insane when I ask him to dig through the box for them. Is anyone else just as obsessed?

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: coolchange

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I LOVE burnt toast, english muffins. I try to do this at work using the toaster in the Caf but everybody freaks out on me and starts panicking "Your toast is burning!" After a couple of more tries I gave up. I could not deal with people freaking out over toasted toast. They all put theirs through and it comes out the same color as going in, just dehydrated. What is the point of that?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Sean

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I feel your pain, Sean. in restaurants, one has to specify "burnt" for dark toast. "well done" usually ensures slighty-yellowed dough. what is it with people and carbon in their food?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. homefries, all pancakes, toast, english muffins, standard muffins and, the odd cinnamon pop-tart.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: cef

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I know what you mean! At work I ask for toast and I always have to shout at them before they try to throw away the burnt toast and toast me another. Bagels also work wonderfully burnt with heaps of butter so its all crunchy but the butter runs down your chin when you eat......comfort food heaven! Anyway, its supposed to be super bad for you so I managed to wean my son off it but I still have it myself on the sly:)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. one thing that instantly popped in my mind: WHEAT THINS! taste great w. a slightly burnt edge...some boxes are like this others are not- when they aren't just pop em into the oven for a little bit.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. Burned microwave popcorn! not so burnt that they melt into each other. Just a bit black on each piece. It extra flavorful.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. Tortillas fresh from the comal with those lovely burn spots.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. You are clearly a fringe element.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        As am I :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I like a nicely charred pizza crust -- especially when the crust has those huge blister bubbles -- inexplicably, when I eat these bubbles I taste something akin to pepperoni.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Also, in a bag of roasted peanuts, I look for those legumes with shells that are a few shades darker (some even black) than the normal tan -- when I crack these guys open, often I find that the peanuts inside are small and shrivelled (hmm... that doesn't sound too appetizing). But they have a deep, extra-roasted nuttiness that is delicious.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. Popcorn, potato chips, the whites of over-easy eggs, sauteed onions, grilled vegetables, fried potatoes, and toast--all best with a few crusty and browned places!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I like the half-popped popcorn kernels, too. Proves I've still got good enough teeth to eat 'em.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Kinnexa

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            As a kid, my mother used to cook a hunk of provolone directly over the gas burner until it was burnt and bubbly on the outside. Yes, she cleaned up the mess herself.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Boy was it good.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: dolores

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              And here I thought I was the only one who loves burnt food products. Nothing better the a juicy but charred burger and "Well Done" pizza...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: Kinnexa

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              My mom always says that onions are the only food that's good at any stage from raw to burnt.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            3. Hot dogs, marshmallows, mac and cheese charred on the top..tasty

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. wow.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                this is a long one!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                i can't read all of them, and i know cheese has been mentioned, but i'll mention this anyways.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                when i make my quesadillas, i like to smoosh out the cheese around the edges so that it sits on the oil for a while and gets crispy & a little burnt. so good.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                burnt hotdogs & bologna too.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                there's other stuff too, but i can't recall at the moment.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                slightly burnt stuff really adds flavor though.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                it's weird huh? :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. My mother burnt almost everything. We kids always complained but never would I have guessed that I would grow up actually liking burnt food -- especially cheese. I know burnt meat can cause cancer (at least that's what "they" say) so I don't eat that and I hope burnt cheese isn't as bad as burnt meat. I like to top my "sunny side up" egg with shredded cheese. Of course, some always falls directly onto the skillet so it gets fried (not necessarily burnt) very nicely. I scrape it off and eat it separately. Yummy!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. i rarely ever eat them, but once in a great while I like pop tarts toasted until they're slightly charred.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. Fat! My steaks or lamb chops must be cooked to medium rare, then get that fire blazing and char the fat on the outside really fast.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. Roasted vegetables, hot dogs and other sausages, edges on cookies.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. Potato chips. Always try to find the darkest chips in the bag first.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. Roast chestnuts. It's not the char on the outside but a little charring inside the shell that is very interesting.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: kagemusha49

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              French fries. The more well-done the better.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. Growing up, my Granny did most of the cooking. She does about 5 dishes really well, and burns the heck out of everything else. But it is what I grew up eating.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              The first time I ordered chorizo con huevos in a restaurant, I was an adult. When it arrived, I told my mom, "Oh my god, they served this chorizo RAW! They didn't even cook it! Gross!"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              She looked at it for a minute and realized that I had never seen/eaten chorizo that wasn't burnt up.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              To this day, I prefer it that way.