Sunday, October 6, 2013

Chipotle Bacon Chile Cheese Burger
By:  Martin Phillips

Ingredients for the Burger
2 pounds ground beef; one package  93/7  lean-to-fat and one 80/20 lean-to-fat ratio
½ sweet Vidalia onion, finely chopped
*the other ¾ onion sliced and soaked in a bowl in almond milk
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped or grated
8 slices of bacon
1 ½ cups chickpea flour
2 cups canola, vegetable or grape seed oil
2 Poblano chiles, roasted, peeled, seeded and sliced into halves
1 ball of Oaxaca cheese, sliced
¼ teaspoon Hickory Smoke (liquid smoke)
½ teaspoon Chipotle powder
½ Chipotle in Adobo
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
½ teaspoon dried oregano*
½ teaspoon cumin seed*
½ teaspoon coriander seed*
3 cups fresh baby Arugula

Aioli Ingredients
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1 – 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
½ tablespoon aged Tamari sauce
1 tablespoon stone ground mustard
½ tablespoon Chipotle in Adobo
1 /2 cup of Mayonnaise
½ teaspoon cumin seed, ground
1 teaspoon finely chopped garlic
¼ teaspoon Sriracha sauce
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
The juice of one lime
*1 tablespoon bacon grease from baking the bacon.  Unhealthy, yes. Good, absolutely!

In a medium sized bowl, combine all of the ingredients for the Chipotle Aioli and whisk thoroughly to combine all of the ingredients.  Set the bowl in the refrigerator until service.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.  Place a rack on a baking sheet and lay the bacon slices on the rack.  Season one side with a sprinkle of the following:  garlic powder, paprika and Chipotle powder.  Cook for eight to ten minutes, turn, season, and cook for eight more minutes.  Remove and place the bacon on a paper towel to drain.  Reserve a tablespoon of the bacon grease.  Once all eight slices are done, cover with foil and set aside.

Meanwhile, change the oven temperature to 400 degrees.  Toss the washed Poblano chiles in a little extra virgin olive oil and place them on the baking sheet and rack the bacon had been baked on.  Roast for approximately eight minutes, turn, and allow to roast for about eight more minutes.  If the skin of the peppers appears charred, they are done.  If not allow them to roast until the skin is charred.  Remove them, place in a plastic zip-lock bag and allow to steam and cool.  After fifteen minutes, remove the peppers, and remove the skin.  It should peel off very easily.  Remove the stems, slice in half, seed the chiles, and slice them into halves again.  Each pepper should yield four quarters.  

Slice the Oaxaca cheese into round slices and set aside in the refrigerator. 

In a large bowl, combine all of the burger ingredients.  *Using a spice grinder or mortar and pestle, grind the dried oregano, coriander seeds and cumin seeds and sprinkle over the ground beef.  Using your hands, fold in the onion, garlic, sauces and spices until thoroughly combined.  Score the meat so you will have six burgers.  If you want them larger and you have an odd number of people to feed, make five burgers, which will be slightly larger. 

Heat a cast iron skillet or grill plate over medium-high or high heat.  You will not need to add any oil.  Add the first three burgers when the skillet is very hot. They will sizzle and smoke.  Allow the burgers to cook about four to five minutes per side.  I only add three as I do not want to crowd the burgers.  When the burgers release easily, they are ready to turn, again, in about five minutes.  Remove the first three burgers when they are done and cook the next three.  Place a foil tent over the first finished burgers and place them in the oven at 200-degrees to keep them warmed.  When the final three burgers are done, place all six (they will fit, now) into the cast iron skillet or the grill plate.  Top each burger with a Poblano chile slice, and top that with a slice of the Oaxaca cheese.  Place the skillet back into the oven to allow the cheese to melt.  This, however, can also be done on the stovetop with the foil or with a skillet cover.

Simultaneously, heat the oil for the fried onion strings to 350 degrees.  Remove the onion slices bowl from the refrigerator and set beside the skillet or deep fryer.  Add the chickpea flour to a large plate and add a teaspoon of Chipotle powder, garlic powder, ground coriander and cumin seed, along with a teaspoon or so of salt and pepper, each.  Using a fork, mix the spices into the flour.  Remove some of the onions and coat with the flour.  When a wooden spoon begins to bubble in the hot oil, you are ready to fry up the onions.  This is a flash fry, so the onions will take less than three minutes to thoroughly become golden brown.  Cook the onions in batches and allow them to rest on a large plate covered with paper towels.  Add a little salt to each batch. 

Meantime, prep your buns.  I use Asiago cheese buns, but you can use Kaiser rolls or whatever buns you like.  Here is how I build this burger:  A little sheen of the aioli on the bottom bun, place the cheese burger atop that, followed by that seasoned bacon. On the top bun, slather the aioli, liberally, place the arugula over the burger, and the fried onion strings atop the arugula.  Crown the burger with the bun and enjoy your masterpiece!   

Thank you for your time!