By Michael Harris-Arzon, The Simplistic Professional
Gourmet burgers used to be something you only found in trendy restaurants. Now we are seeing more and more people making them at home. You can’t get on Instagram these days without seeing someone talking about a fist full of burger deliciousness.
I have always loved a good burger, but I never bothered to learn to make them myself since we have always lived close to our choice of places to eat. When we moved to the Metro Orlando area, we thought we would have everything we needed close by. But here in central Florida, it can literally take an hour to drive 10 miles. I have never seen so many school zones in my life.
Needless to say, I had to learn how to make a great burger. Once I figured out how to make a basic burger, I started experimenting with flavor profiles and ingredients. Besides different types of meat and topping combinations, I have learned that stuffing a burger gives you a tremendous number of options. Now, I could never go back to just a plain burger. ‘Give me toppings and fillings galore I say!’
- 1/2 Lb. Ground Pork
- 1/2 Lb. Ground Beef
- 2 Tbs. Applewood Seasoning
- 5 Tbs. Fresh Chives, Chopped
- 1/2 Lb. Bacon
- 1 Large Red Onion, Cut in Half and Sliced
- 2 Tbs. Butter, unsalted
- 1/2 Cup Dark Brown Sugar
- 2 Tbs. Cracked Peppercorns
- 1 Block Cream Cheese, Room Temperature
- 2 Cups Cheddar Cheese, Shredded
- 1 Cup Pimentos (Roasted Red Peppers) Chopped Medium/Fine
- Slices of Gouda Cheese
- 1 Large Tomato, Sliced
- Romaine Lettuce
- Hamburger Buns
- Non-stick Cooking Spray
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
- Cut your bacon into 1″ pieces. In a medium skillet, fry over medium-high heat until cooked medium well. You don’t want it to be crispy. Remove from heat and drain on paper towels until ready to use.
- In a medium sauce pan, melt your 2 tbs. of butter over a medium-high heat. Once melted, add your onion slices and cook until they are a golden brown. Stirring occasionally.
- Once your onions are caramelized, lower the heat to medium and add your bacon pieces and brown sugar. You want to cook it for about 8-10 minutes, until your sugar has thickened. Stir regularly to keep from burning.
- While your jam is cooking, in a medium bowl add your softened cream cheese, chopped pimentos and shredded cheddar cheese. With a spatula, mix well until completely combined.
- When your Onion and bacon jam is done, beside to remove from the sauce pot into a small bowl and let cool.
- In a large mixing bowl, add your ground pork, ground beef, 2 tbs. of Applewood seasoning and your chopped chives. With your hands, gently mix until your chives and seasoning are incorporated into the meat. Be careful to not over mix as you want the meat mixture to be loose and not dense.
- Form your hamburger patties half the thickness, but the normal circumfrance, you normally would. This is because you are using two patties for each burger.
- In the center of the bottom patty, add a spoonful of your pimento cheese. Place a second patty on top and seal the edges well. You don’t want cheese oozing out during the cooking process.
- Take a large baking sheet and lightly spray with non-stick cooking spray. Place your burgers about an inch apart. Bake on the center rack until your desired doneness.
- When your burgers are done, take out of the oven. Add a slice of Gouda cheese and let rest.
- While your burgers are resting, on the top rack of the oven add your hamburger buns inside part face down. Bake for 2-3 minutes until toasted. Immediately remove your buns.
- Now its time to build these fabulous burgers. Start with the bottom bun, add your favorite dressing (mustard, ketchup, mayo), then add your stuffed burger patty, a large spoonful of your bacon jam, Romaine lettuce, slice of tomato and top bun.
- Serve with your favorite fries and enjoy!