From our Food Goddess, TaMara:
Stuffed burgers, yum. It’s grilling season. And as much as I love a good grilled burger, I’m always looking for a way to elevate them to something beyond ordinary. I’ll probably have several posts over the summer with different ways to dress up ordinary ground beef for the grill. Today though, I’m going to start with my new favorite, stuffed burgers with sharp cheddar and jalapenos.
Before I get to that, let’s start with my basic burger recipe, one I’ve been making since I was a kid, that makes sure even the leanest ground beef comes out moist and flavorful. That recipe is here.
Next, JeffreyW has been playing with perfecting sliders here, here and here. If you can get through those photos without your mouth watering, you’re stronger than I am.
Your turn. What’s your favorite way to prepare your burgers? Are you a turkey or veggie burger person? If so, what’s your favorite way to fix them? What is your “must have” on a burger? Ketchup? Mustard? A thick tomato slice? My must have is ketchup. Lots of it.
For tonight’s feature recipe, I’m going to take you step by step through a single burger prep. It should be easy to multiply the ingredients for as many as you’ll want to make. I’m using sharp cheddar and pickled jalapenos, but you can use blue cheese, mild cheddar, jack, swiss, or any favorite cheese. An ounce of cheese per quarter pound of ground beef is about the right ratio to keep everything from falling apart and still have a nice melted center. Add grilled onions, mushrooms or peppers to change things up. The ideas are endless.
Jalapeno-Cheddar Stuffed Hamburgers:
Ingredients for each burger:
4 oz ground beef
1/4 to 1/2 tsp crushed garlic (opt)
1 oz sharp cheddar, sliced thin
2 or more slices of pickled jalapenos
Mix salt, pepper and garlic into the ground beef. Form two, 2-oz patties. Place jalapenos on one burger, cheese on the other.
Place the two sides together and seal the edges completely. Gently flatten the burger, but be careful because you don’t want the cheese busting out of the center.
The key to grilling or frying these is low and slow. Medium heat seals them and allows the cheese to melt without drying the burger out. I flipped at the 5 minute mark, but depending on the heat, 3-4 minutes may be enough to flip. They’re thin, so the beef cooks quickly, but you want to make sure the cheese melts. I would say minimum 4 minutes per side.
If cheese starts to leak out, flip and flip again as needed. DON’T press down on these burgers while you grill, you’ll have a cheesy mess.
Now the warning. Did I say WARNING? Yes I did. You’ll need to rest these burgers to let the cheese cool a bit. Otherwise you could be biting into a scalding cheese center. You’ve been WARNED.
That’s the basics, now let your imagination run wild. Maybe I should have titled this, How To Stuff A Wild Burger.
Until next week…..
My blood vessels curse you, even as my taste buds rejoice.
It will be stuffed burgers at my house tomorrow night.
Oooh yum. I’ve been looking for an excuse to buy a new grill. This just might be it.
We’ve been eating only lamb and bison burgers this summer. Prefer both to beef. And when you have Gene’s sausage shop a mere mile away why wouldn’t you?
For those of you that prefer eating lighter on summer evenings (for some reason, things like sandwiches or pasta salad seem more fitting on summer evenings, at least to me)
These are *wonderful* and easy.
Grilled cheese (olive oil, no butter) on sourdough, w/ spinach & artichoke hearts, sour cream, mozzarella and shredded parmesan. Yummy!
Imagine an artichoke dip sandwich and you’ll be in the ballpark.
The official recipe is here:
You had me until the words “pickled” and “jalapeño” were put together. Fresh for me, or green chile, and I’m there.
Also, if you’re grill-less but want a good, and quick chicken dish that isn’t lacking in flavor.
Here’s my blackened chicken alfredo – the whole thing centers around prepping the chicken. It doesn’t matter what you do with the sauce.
Again, the secret is the chicken, which is the result of me abusing strips of chicken breast before putting them on pasta w/ alfredo sauce. I cover the skillet, and parboil them for about 6-7mins in a reduction of olive oil, a little water (of course), crushed red pepper flakes, finely chopped garlic, cayenne pepper, basil, ground black pepper, oregano, rosemary and fancy sea salt bits. I flip them for the last 2 or 3 minutes, and then uncover the pan, turn the heat on high, and brown the bottoms in the reduction that by now is nearly evaporated, and is basically just oil and flavor.
Serve w/ alfredo sauce over fettucine w/ garlic bread and veggies.
Once you said that you like ketchup, “lots of it,” you completely invalidate anything you can say with regard to flavor, texture, or anything else. Sure, that’s your own personal taste. Fair enough. You should go to Mickey D’s. Ketchup is free, the food is shit. Don’t worry, be happy!
And one more, for the grill deprived that want something no nonsense, these are delicious:
Crash Hot Potatoes.
Shared by a FB friend of mine from Australia. I’ve made them, and they are indeed easy and fabulous.
@Haydnseek: I always suspected you were in the pocket of Big Mustard.
@Haydnseek: Bah humbug to you. When I was younger I loved ketchup on steak. Not so much now a days.
Ok, I’m going to say something I’ve thought of saying for a while. Recipe threads that I provide are to be free of mean. Someone provides a recipe, ingredient or whatever and you don’t like it, too bad.
I know it’s BJ tradition to snark and be mean, but not here. This is a place where people should be able to share without the usual crap.
That is all. Thank you.
ETA: I don’t care what you say about me or what I provide, but anyone who dares to share a favorite food or recipe with you will be treated with respect.
@danah gaz: The sandwich sounds decadent and I already saved it to my recipe file.
@BGinCHI: No, but I relish the thought……….
When I was a teenager, I served a brief stint as a short order cook at a local fancy ish drive in burger place, and they had stuffed burgers.
Those pre formed patties might not seem to be the most appealing thing in the world, but there’s something to be said for their even thickness and general uniformity when it comes to sealing something inside two of them.
If any of you have trouble with stuffing and cooking hand formed patties, you might start with some preformed ones to make it a bit less complicated.
Yummy, the only thing I would add is some ground up aspirin to help prevent a weekend ruining heart attack.
@JPL: Warning. They are like crack. =)
@TaMara (BHF): Just remember: you always have the trigger. Not to tempt you or anything. :)
:: ducks ::
It’s not burgers, but I used to put hard boiled eggs inside meatloaf so that you would get slices of egg in the center, very pretty. Children liked the surprised.
I don’t have any jalapenos, but I might try stuffing hamburgs with pickled garlic tomorrow. Thanks for the idea.
@22over7: I might try it with roasted jalapenos. I’d skip the fresh ones though.
@muddy: Oooh! I think I’ll try that.
Oh and one point about veggie burgers: please please PLEASE make your own. Almost all commercially available veggie burgers have so much crap and filler in them it negates the whole idea of eating them in the first place.
There are alternatives out there in the world.
@TaMara (BHF): You do realize that every time you use ketchup, you have to pay Maria Heinz Kerry a nickel………….
@muddy: I’m thinking Swiss and mushrooms this weekend for friends of mine. I’m big on mushrooms, so mine will probably get grilled onions. Pickled garlic sounds good.
@Haydnseek: :-) not if I make it myself. Okay, not if JeffreyW makes it.
@Yatsuno: Black bean and cheddar burgers are my favorite. Recipe here.
And easy to make.
I am of the belief that NOTHING that is cooked on the grill is complete without grilled onions (or in England fried onions), I love nothing more than a simple hot dog absolutely slathered with grilled onions, I think I love the onions more than I like the hot dog to be honest.
@TaMara (BHF): Alright! Ya got me! You can libel my coat, you can slander my hat, you can heap evil insults on my calico cat. But I’ll never, ever divulge my late mothers burger recipe! (Hmmm, do I detect some lyrics to a blues song there? Stay tuned……
@TaMara (BHF): It would be nice to put the pickled garlic in something for a change, I am apt just to eat it out of the jar as a snack.
Ground venison is my favorite. Strong flavored and lean.
@22over7: I know. I love jalapenos, but something about burgers, I just want the tang of the pickled ones. I love vinegar, so that probably explains that quirk
[email protected]Haydnseek: Can’t wait.
ETA: LOL on the tagline when I refreshed the post.
Where tasty lettuce and good mustard aren’t elitist.
I know fresh is better, but I keep a jar of jalapeño slices in the refrigerator, using them liberally on eggs, sandwiches, and so on.
OK not exactly burgers but close, this evening I made some ground beef kebabs, I added chickpeas, garam masala, oregano, cayenne, mint and cilantro, one egg and some bread crumbs. Had them with a spinach salad and some pita bread.
@Yatsuno: The ones on sale at Trader Joe, with chickpeas and veggies are quite good.
@schrodinger’s cat: “this evening I made some ground beef kebabs”
that seems like it would take more than a little skill.
Me too! Ketchup, ketchup, ketchup. And more for the fries.
Burger stuffed with garlic butter!
@danah gaz: Both the chickpeas and the egg act as a binder, not too difficult.
@schrodinger’s cat: Wow, kind of a coincidence, JeffreyW made ground lamb kebabs yesterday.
@Wag: Oh, yum!
@Violet: Ketchup for the fries and mustard for the burger, I like stone ground elitist mustard.
@TaMara (BHF): Mind meld?
ETA: I have also made these kebabs with ground turkey. Lamb is not a personal favorite.
@danah gaz: Sounds like all you do is make sure the mixture is solid enough to hold together on the skewer then the rest is just slapping them on the fire.
@schrodinger’s cat: My old boss went home to the Philippines and brought back some tamarind paste for me. I’m now trying to decide what to do with it.
@Yatsuno: Easy answer, tamarind and date chutney.
Mix a bit of your favorite ground sausage in with your ground beef, season with a splash of light soy, worcestershire, salt, pepper, onion, and garlic powder, make small patties, top with a small slice of cheddar and grilled onions, get dinner rolls and have sliders.
I’ve been making dinner almost every night for about a month now, and I have to say, I am FREAKIN’ SICK OF IT. Argh.
There was a place in downtown L.A. — now gone — that would stuff its burgers with shredded brisket which they had braised for hour upon hour in some heavy red wine. Then they would grill. The result was out of this world.
@Haydnseek: try these artisanal ketchups! Truly yummy: http://www.etsy.com/listing/122303066/artisanal-ketchup-gift-set I admit that “artisanal ketchup” is a phrase that sounds like it escaped from Portlandia, but sometimes a little shame is worth it if the ketchup tastes good enough…
@Yatsuno: do you have any good recipes for bean based veggie burgers without mushrooms? My local vegetarian cafe recently closed and I have been mourning their awesome array of veggie burgers. I’m really quite a good cook but whenever I try to make my own veggie burgers they are always too moist and sloppy.
@Yatsuno: That recipe looks fabulous. Have you ever tried the Ezra Poundcake veggie burger recipe?
@TaMara (BHF): that sounds tasty! Do you think it would work without the egg?
I have experimented with different cuts of beef for burgers. Slice the beef into thin strips and then cube it. Put the meat in the freezer for 15 minutes or so (not to freeze it, just to firm it up) and then start chopping with a chef’s knife, aiming for a consistency that resembles ground beef when a patty is formed. That only takes about 5 minutes. This allows you to mix different cuts of beef to your taste. After you have formed your patties you are ready for the pan or grill. The resulting burgers have a nice “chew” to them and you know exactly what is in them and that they have not been sitting on a shelf or in a freezer for however long it took to sell them.
My next blend will be one I haven’t tried yet – rib-eye + a leaner cut (probably beef skirt).
Take some short ribs and some brisket, grid it up. Salt, pepper, and throw it over some very hot mesquite. Medium rare if possible.
@SuperHrefna: You can try substituting the egg with chickpea flour, it is quite sticky and used as a binder in Indian vegetarian cooking. You can get in either natural food stores, in Indian Grocery stores it is sold as Besan.
@schrodinger’s cat: Thank you! I will give that a go. How much chickpea flour do you think, a few tablespoons? A quarter cup? Maybe I will experiment tomorrow.
I’ve taken to using sesame seed oil in place of olive. Has a lower burn temp but I think a better flavor. And I like the recipe except for the sour cream. Gonna make those changes and try them over the next week.
Tonight was BBQ bacon cheddar burgers. They were nice and thick. Hut came out the size of sliders. Anyway just kept it simple with salt and pepper and some chili powder, covered them in sauce before I pan fried them in a little bacon grease.
@SuperHrefna: Just a tablespoon I would imagine, maybe two. But yeah just go until you have the proper amount of stick.
I bought fries at a small stand decades ago in Belgium and all they had was mayonnaise. I was hungry and tried it. Been mayonnaise ever since. I will use catsoup if that’s all that’s available….
@schrodinger’s cat: I don’t mind mustard on a burger, but in order of preference for me it’s ketchup, ketchup, ketchup, then mayo, then mustard. I’ll eat the burger with mustard if that’s all that’s available, but I’ll always go for the ketchup if I can.
I do almost all the cooking in my household. It does get old. Sometimes I just want to get take out.
How’s the gluten stuff going?
@Ruckus: Belgian mayo is a very different animal from the US gloop from what I understand. Still can’t stand it though.
A friend taught me to make a salsa to use on, well everything.
3-4 tomatoes makes enough for 1 meal for 2.
Put the tomatoes on the grill for about 10-15 min to warm them and make the skin break, rotating to soften them all over. Grill a serrano pepper at the same time till the skin is soft and peels off, 5-10 min.
In a bowl fresh squeezed garlic, salt, the peeled pepper. Use whatever to grind, I use a drinking glass. Add the peeled tomatoes(they will be burn your fingers hot off the grill) and crush them into the previous mix. Add chopped onion, I use red.
The results will be anywhere from mild to smoking hot depending on how much serrano, which will vary in heat, with no real way to tell. Spoon over chicken, burgers, salmon, tiliapia, whatever.
That’s what I’m having for dinner tonight.
He is right, start with a tbsp at a time, 1/4 cup will be too much. Does the burger recipe have any onions? if not you will have to add a little water to chickpea flour.
Yeah, it has to be real mayo, absolutely no miracle whip or anything like that. There are several brands that actually taste about the same.
damn, that burger looks fabulous
Haven’t really tried it yet — last week’s menus from Slender Kitchen had a lot of buns and pasta involved. I’m trying to steer away from it in prepared foods, and that’s about it.
It’s really working for my boss and her fibromyalgia, though. She was a little skeptical at first, but she noticed that the pain in her knee flared up after she had a scone while on a trip. (She said that particular scone was still worth it, though.)
@Mnemosyne: Interesting! WereBear and I seem to have had similar experiences to that. Plenty more testimonials like that on the Wheat Belly blog, but of course, as always, the plural of anecdote is not data.
I really think people’s problems with wheat/gluten is a complex mixture of issues, including the genetic changes to wheat that our digestive systems aren’t able to deal with, not preparing grains properly (soaking, using other agents to increase our ability to absorb them), generally poor diets leaving our intestinal systems vulnerable to problems, etc.
Since I’m not celiac, I’m hopeful over time that my intestinal tract will be healed and that I can chance the occasional wheat indulgence when it’s really worth it. So far I’m not there. We’ll see if that’s possible as time goes on.
Edit: Do you know what prompted your boss to try giving up gluten?
Our favorite is my pork and bison burger since we don’t ordinary American beef (growth hormones!). Minced onion and jalapeno, garlic powder, smoked paprika. High heat for 3 min. on each side then moving to a lower heat level to cook to the desired doneness (medium due to the pork). I love ketchup but prefer steak sauce or Worcestershire sauce for the “fit” with this burger. Oh, also thin sliced and caramelized onions.
@BGinCHI: I do declare, I hope for your sake it is organic and been raised in a nurturing environment. Personally, I prefer yak meat that has been grazed above 10000 foot elevation. Unfortunately the wife got laid off and they’ve cut back on my hours so we’re saving up for a pound of 80/20 burger for the 4th. Hope you enjoy your burgers…I know we will.
@Violet: I gave up most wheat a long time ago, because it made my joints painful (long story how I got to that was the issue).
Since I don’t eat it all the time, I think my body has healed, because now I can eat it on occasion without much issue. And I’ve made breads and desserts with organic, small farm flour and that, besides having a completely different (re:better) flavor, seems to cause no issues at all.
@mainmati: Love bison.
@danah gaz: Your grilled cheese sandwich seems yummy but I’ve never met a pasta salad that wasn’t just blandness.
She was diagnosed with fibromyalgia, and the current thinking is that fibromyalgia is a form of arthritis. Doctors have been recommending gluten-free diets for arthritis for at least a decade now, so she decided to give it a try.
@mainmati: My pasta salads kick arse. Just sayin’
Crab, Feta, Greek Olives. You cannot f*ck with them. =)
Must have on burger- bacon & cheese. I can eat a good burger without them, but rarely do unless there’s something else interesting going on (marinade, mushrooms, green chiles etc.) But there’s something about that savory combination of bacon and cheese…
Just Some Fuckhead
@TaMara (BHF): Get over here and hug it out, snickerdoodle!
@Mnemosyne: I did not know that! The mother if one of my friends has RA. I wonder if she’s tried giving up gluten. I’ll have to ask.
@TaMara (BHF): Thanks for the nfo. I hope I get to that point. I’d like to be able to indulge occasionally. Glad it has worked out for you.
I live in Texas now, which is home of the mustard burger. But I tend to go by the whole “mustard is for hot dogs, ketchup is for burgers” rule.
Enjoy the listeria. You’re eating meat ground up in a commercial meat grinder that probably hasn’t been cleaned for a week. After the sweating and fever and projectile vomiting eases up, you’ll start getting explosive diarrhea.
Me, I’ll stick to tofu.