So about two weeks ago as my semester ended John and I went to eat burgerz at Burger Express down the street from my apartment and I realized I had hoped and was disappointed when they did not have a green olive burger. I got to thinking, where am I getting this green olive burger idea from? I looked up 'green olive burger' on San Francisco's yelp with no luck. Then I googled it and how could I have forgotten Mr. Fables, a western Michigan chain of restaurants and staple of my childhood? In the 80's, my family used to go over to Battle Creek to the Lakeview Square Mall and eat Mr. Fables' amazing onion rings and Mr. Fabulous burgers with delicious green olive topping. Since the inexplicable closing of Mr. Fables in the 90's, a debate has raged on the internet regarding the recipe for their secret sauce. People seemed to come to conclusion that it was no more than mayonnaise, green olives, and olive brine.
So John and I just got back from hiking to Knapp's Castle and Inspiration Point in Santa Barbara and we decided to attempt a reincarnation of the Fabled green olive burger. I made green olive topping from a jar of habanero stuffed green olives that John's German roommate accidentally purchased and has not touched since his first mouth-burning experience with them. I removed the habanero bits, chopped them up, and mixed them with some mayo and brine. Then we fried some ground buffalo patties. Topped them with pepper jack cheese. Toasted John's homemade sourdough bun in the pan. And topped it all off with ketchup, mustard and spinach. While it goes without saying that we diverged from the midwestern version, it was so good to eat green olives on a burger for the first time in probably twenty years! They were the spicy western version. Maybe we should open a spin-off chain of 'Mr. Fabled Burgers' out here in CA.