sizzling success

The sizzling hot 2014 Steak-umm® Firehouse Challenge

During two rounds of competition, top contestants from the 2014 Steak-umm®Firehouse Challenge went head to head in a 24-hour fundraising challenge to raise money for the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation. Each team designed its own fundraising event using and supported by Steak-umm®.

Round 1 and round 2 firefighters had red-hot events that raised nearly $25,000 for the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation. Each contestant also earned cash prizes from Steak-umm® for his own firehouse.

Ladder 7 Burger

Alex Callegari should know how to handle heat. After all, he’s been fighting fires with Boca Raton Fire Rescuefor 10 years. But he can also stand it in the kitchen. Callegari’s a finalist in the Bud & Burgers Championship, a national contest to find the nation’s best amateur burger chef. It’s set for July 11 in St. Louis. He qualified by winning a semifinal at Taste of Cincinnati with his Ladder 7 Burger (named for the fire truck he drives).


He starts with half a pound of ground chuck for each burger blending with sea salt, black pepper and Worcestershire sauce. In a cast iron skillet preheated to medium-high, he sears the chuck for three minutes on each side, tops it with a slice of Gouda and transfers the skillet to a hot oven for eight to 10 minutes. He then removes the patties to a plate to cool for eight minutes. The buns, potato rolls buttered on both cut sides, are then placed in the skillet and popped back in the oven till golden brown.
Toppings include a garlic herb aioli, red onion relish, Portobello mushrooms baked for 20 minutes in a balsamic vinaigrette (balsamic vinegar, olive oil, honey and Dijon mustard) and oven-browned sliced pancetta.
Assembly: to the bottom of each bun add two tablespoons of aioli, then the meat, topped by two slices of pancetta, three tablespoons of relish, the mushrooms and the bun top. Simple.