25 August 2014

Eats: spicy barbecue bacon burgers

Happy Monday, everyone! I hope you had a good weekend! Here, the heat was nearing triple-digits, so Mr. P and I escaped into the air-conditioned movie theatre (this one, with leather sofas!). We saw this summer blockbuster, and let me tell you, loud fighting scenes feel even tenser when there is a small person inside you who is apparently startled by every loud noise. He’d jump, I’d jump. Fun times with the family!

Before it became so unbearably hot, though, I asked Mr. P to man the grill one night for burgers. I’ve never been a big fan of burgers at home – restaurants just make ‘em the way I like ‘em, so why bother at home? But lately I’ve been in a burger phase, particularly the sort of greasy-artery clogging burgers that are too delicious for proper regret. And so, thanks to Mr. P battling rising temps and mosquitos, we had spicy barbecue bacon burgers!

For the patties, we use a pound of ground beef with a quarter-cup of breadcrumbs, a teaspoon of dried minced onion, and a bit of ground pepper and Worcestershire sauce. I should have added an egg too to keep them more moist, but I am not the usual burger maker even when we do have burgers, so I missed the memo.

We go the breadcrumb route because that’s Mr. P’s preferred style – makes them a bit more meatloaf-y. But you can do all-beef if that’s what you prefer!

Mix that all together and form them into patties. And if you’re blogging about it, take a dang photo before you tell your husband/grill-commander that they’re ready to go outside.

[pretend there’s a photo of patties here!]

Remember, they’ll shrink up when they’re grilled, so form them a bit thinner and flatter than you want your final product to be.

Grill them six minutes a side over medium heat, and then marvel and how beautifully they turn out.

Lookit those grill marks! Mr. P is an expert. And they weren’t dry even though I missed the egg memo, thanks to his grilling expertise.

But let’s back up. While the burgers are grilling, time to prep the rest... like the bacon. I microwave mine because it is way easier and cleaner than trying to fry it, and easy+clean beats crispy in my book.

Ninety seconds, flip, sixty more seconds, done. Paper towel soaks up all the grease!

As for the “barbecue” part of the name: For each burger, prep a mixture of a 1-2 tablespoons of barbecue sauce to 1-2 teaspoons of mayo. It’s only slightly creamier than plain barbecue, but a bit thicker and tangier.

And now... decide if you are really in it to win it. “It” being the awesome burger game at the expense of calories. If you are... butter the inside of your burger buns. I wanted fancy ones, Mr. P wanted the cheap ones... he won this round. But that’s okay, because butter is the great equalizer.

Then broil ‘em, inside-up.

Finally, assemble! I used Colby jack cheese (added not while on the grill, but just after for appropriate melty-ness), bacon, and because I’m daring, jalapeno slices. My grocery was out of jalapenos (??!?) the week I made these, so I used jarred ones. Meh. Fresh would be tops!

Oh man, even the cheese is sweating over this one. Don’t forget the barbecue-mayo sauce before putting it all together!

Yes PLEASE. If that’s not a cheeseburger to cure all cravings, I don’t know what is. The bun is crispy thanks to toasting, the burger is moist, and the barbecue, bacon, and jalapeƱo work together to make a burger that actually reminds me of tasty burgers I’ve had in restaurants. Who knew!

Sure, it’s sinful, but... just go for it. It’s too delicious to be sorry about it. As soon as the weather can cool off a bit, fire up the grill and enjoy one for youself!