Tasty Cook-Off: Burgers

Servings: 1

2 slices bacon
1 sweet onion, sliced thinly
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon brown sugar
8 ounces ground beef (80% lean 20% fat)
1 brioche bun
Unsalted butter
2 slices Gruyère cheese
1 tomato, sliced

1. Preheat oven to 400˚F/200˚C.
2. In a large frying pan, cook bacon until crispy. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate.
3. Add sliced onions to the hot pan and caramelize in the bacon fat. Add brown sugar and balsamic vinegar. Stir until sugar has dissolved. Reduce the heat to low and keep warm until ready to serve.
4. Form the ground beef into a patty. Press into the center of the patty, so that it’s thinner than the edges to cook evenly. Season both sides of the patty with salt & pepper.
5. Heat a large cast-iron skillet, over medium-high heat. Add the patty and cook until the patty turns brown to about ¾ of the way up, then flip, cook for about 3-4 minutes.
6. Once the burger is flipped, add gruyere cheese to the cooked side.
7. Butter sliced brioche bun and toast in the skillet until crisp brown. Remove bun, set aside.
8. Put the skillet in the oven for an additional 5-7 minutes, until the cheese has fully melted.
9. Assemble the burger. Place the cooked patty on the brioche, followed by bacon strips, caramelized onions, sliced tomato, arugula, and brioche top.
Recipe inspired by – http://www.munchkintime.com/caramelized-onions-burger-recipe/

Servings: 1

Pickled Red Onions
1 cup apple cider vinegar
1½ tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon salt
1 red onion, halved and sliced into half moons

1 egg yolk
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1 garlic clove, minced
½ cup olive oil
½ lemon, juiced

1 brioche bun
1 tablespoon butter, melted
4 ounces ground beef (80% lean, 20% fat)
2 slices sharp cheddar cheese
1 leaf butter lettuce
2 thin slices tomato

1. Preheat the oven to broil on high.
2. In a small pan, bring the apple cider vinegar, sugar, and salt to a boil over high heat, whisking until the sugar and salt have dissolved.
3. Remove the pan from the heat and add the sliced onion, making sure they’re fully submerged in vinegar. Set aside.
4. In a small bowl, add the egg yolk, mustard, and garlic and whisk to combine. Slowly add the oil in a steady stream, whisking to combine, ensuring that the aioli is emulsifying. Once the aioli is thick, add in the lemon juice and whisk until creamy. Add salt to taste, and set aside.
5. Brush the brioche bun with the butter and transfer to a baking sheet. Transfer the baking sheet to the oven, and broil for 1½ minutes, until the bun is golden brown.
6. Smear the top bun with aioli, and set aside.
7. Heat a cast iron pan over medium-high heat. Once the pan is hot, brush with oil.
8. Place the mound of ground beef on the pan, and immediately press flat with a spatula. 9. Season with salt and pepper, and cook for about 2½ minutes.
9. Flip the patty over and top with cheddar cheese and cook until the cheese is melted and the patty is browned, about 2 minutes.
10. Transfer the patty to the bun and top with pickled red onions, butter lettuce, and tomato slices.

Servings: 1

Spicy Tomato Jam
2 pounds tomatoes, diced
1 red onion, finely chopped
1 cup brown sugar
1½ teaspoons red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon salt
1 lemon, juiced

Lamb Burger
8 ounces ground lamb
1 clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon mint leaves, finely chopped
1 tablespoon cilantro leaves, finely chopped
¼ teaspoon ground cumin
Salt, to taste
Pepper, to taste
2 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard,
1 tablespoon mayonnaise
1 sesame burger bun
Arugula leaves

1. In a saucepan, combine tomatoes, onion, pepper, brown sugar, cumin, and lemon juice. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Stir frequently, cooking for about 15 minutes.
2. Reduce to medium heat until reduced, and simmer for an additional 20-30 minutes, until it reaches a jam-like consistency. Set aside to cool. Transfer to a jar, storing remaining jam in the fridge for up to one week.
3. In a bowl, combine ground lamb, garlic, mint, cilantro, coriander, and cumin. Mix until just combined.
4. Shape the lamb into a ball. Form a well into the center, large enough for the feta cheese.
5. Place the cheese into the center of the ball, and enclose inside the ground lamb mixture. Gently form a patty. Season both sides with salt and pepper.
6. Cook patty in a hot cast-iron pan set over medium-high heat for about 4-5 minutes each side.
7. In a small bowl, mix together mustard and mayonnaise.
8. Toast the sesame bun.
9. Spread a generous amount of the Dijonaise on the bottom bun followed by arugula, a lamb patty, a few spoonfuls of tomato jam, and finally the top bun.