I have been wanting a garbage plate for a good long while now. The problem with that? The Garbage Plate is a special item that is made at one restaurant in the world: Nick Tahou’s in Rochester, NY. The thing is a damn institution and if you have been to Rochester and never had one? Shame on you. the good thing is that now that I’ve cracked the secret you don’t have to travel just for your delicious fix. I’m glad I don’t since I live in Texas now!
There are a few ways to customize the plate to your liking so this recipe may seem a bit more complicated. It also technically calls for triple ground beef but using an immersion blender works just as well. Might as well get right into it since there’s a lot of explaining and step by step to do! Fair warning: Some of these pictures are meh because I lazied it up with my camera phone.
Nick Tahou’s Legendary Garbage Plate
Macaroni Salad or Baked Beans *
Home Fries **
Prepared Meat x2 ***
1 medium onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, diced or pressed through a garlic press
1 teaspoon oil
1 pound ground beef
1 cup water
6 oz can tomato paste
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon allspice
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
salt to taste
* The macaroni salad is best prepared the day before (or a few days, depending). You could get store bought but it’s easy just to boil some shells, rinse them in cold water and add equal parts mayo and mustard to your liking. If you don’t like macaroni salad at all any canned baked beans can be used in place of it. Warm them up first!
** Home fries are best made while the sauce is simmering and the meat is cooking. Just chop up some potatoes and fry in oil. I have a deep fryer so I used that. Don’t forget to season your fries! (I forgot and wished I hadn’t).
*** There are different types of meat you can order with this: hamburger patty, white hot, red hot, or chicken piece. Use two of whichever your preferred one is. I used hamburger patties for this.
We will start with the sauce first because that is what takes the longest. Start off by heating up oil on medium high heat and cooking the onions and garlic.
Secondly, add the ground beef and all the spices. Increase the heat to high and cook the meat all the way through.
Add the tomato paste and water and stir well. A trick for the tomato paste is to cut around the entire circle on both the top and bottom lids, then take the bottom off and use the top lid to push it all down. It comes right out with no muss and no need for an extra utensil to help get the paste. Stir well and simmer for 10 minutes on medium.
Immersion Blender time! Get it in there on the highest setting (mine has two) and grind up that meat! You can see the part in the photo below here that was being blended and how it looked different than the outer edges.
When you’re done it should look like this. Let it simmer on medium low for an hour, adding extra water if needed to keep it not super thick.
Time to layer! Oh god the best time. On your plate put half and half home fries and either macaroni salad or baked beans, then add your meat of choice, then slather this delicious meat sauce on top and eat. It was ranked the top fattiest unhealthiest food in New York for good reason but that won’t stop me from having a good time.