The Walsh family from Dublin have been making these things since 1950; and they are not dissimilar to Wexford rissoles, which at least have the virtue of being made fresh . . . from nameless ingredients found around and behind the fryers in chip-shops. Spice Burgers OTOH, come in lurid plastic packaging [above R] with a sell-by date a couple of weeks after manufacture. Their contents are also nameless because it is a secret family recipe, which was the subject of a bitter row in 2009 between the company and the son of the founder. ANNyway, The Boy had bought a brace of these food-products and then bottled out of cooking and eating them - possibly because he's no longer a starving teenager and possibly because Real Food was on offer for the whole of his visit home. So a week later, on the very cusp of the sell-by, I brought the Spice Burgers away home, and shared them, one each, with Bolivar who is visiting from Venezuela. Viewing the little bread-crumbed patty on his plate, Bolivar asked "¿Que es?" and we were neither of us able to answer. Although The Beloved boldly stated that they were meat,
That's only partially true because 'meat' is a long way down the table of contents:
Water, rusk (gluten), onion, beef (9%), beef fat, crumbs (gluten), soya protein, wheat flour, beef connective tissue, rapeseed oil, seasoning (salt, herbs, spice, more rusk (gluten), yeast extract, sodium sulphite, flavouring), potato starch, cornflour, modified starch, more salt.
Jaysus! another food product which has more water in it than anything else. How much more? The maths says that, as beef is 9% and we will suppose that the fat, connective tissue, binder and flavourings total 8% then 83% is left. Of that at least 10% must be onion and 11% must be rusk (gluten) so water in SBs cannot be more than 60% and might, with more rusk-and-onion be as little as 30% but cannot be less. They are one of the most popular foods in the country because they were created by a butcher from Finglas who knew that if you lurry in salt, fat, flavourings; package it in a crispy crunchy coating and cook it so it's ready to eat then people will want to eat them. Especially if you can
This food ingredients critic felt a little "uneasy in the tum" about half an hour after consumption; which might have been hysteria and soon passed off. Like Mr Eastcoastman's ice-cream, you have to wonder whether any of the mix get converted to useful protein or calories.