Before you put away your grill for the Winter, here’s a recipe that will put dinner on the table in a flash. It’s my Grilled Skirt Steak with Chimichurri featured in this month’s Paleo Magazine – Page 16! And for those of you who have my cookbook, Great Food Starts Fresh, you can find this recipe on page 180.
Three bonus recipes for the week. Two on the Piedmont Healthcare website and one on the Livestrong website. They can also be found in my seasonal cookbook, Great Food Starts Fresh!
First, my Honey Vanilla Whipped Ricotta with Fresh Fruit:
Second, my Spicy Watermelon Gazpacho:
Finally, my Grilled Hamburger with Tomato Mostarda:
If you’re gonna go for it, go for it, right? And bacon does make everything better, so why not blend it into your burger for the ultimate hickory smoked bacon burger? Who’s with me?!
The trick is to put your bacon meat through a grinder or chop it very, very finely. If you go for the chopping route, make sure your bacon is cold before you slice into it. It’ll make things easier. You can even throw it in the freezer for 10 minutes before chopping. Here’s what my bacon looked like after I gave it a really good chop. And I still went back for more chopping after this. The finer the better.
Once you’ve got your bacon nice and fine, you’re ready to marry it with the beef. (Do I hear wedding bells?) I actually chopped it into my beef and folded the mixture, chopping and folding again and again to make sure it was well mixed and any larger bacon pieces were chopped fine. (Normally you wouldn’t want to fuss much with the ground meat to avoid overworking it, but because of the texture of the bacon and the amount of fat in the bacon, it didn’t seem to affect the final outcome.)
Okay, now you’re turn!
The Bacon Makes Everything Better Burger
Yield: 4 sliders
For the burger:
¼ pound cold hickory smoked bacon, about 3 slices of bacon, put through a meat grinder or chopped very finely (you really can’t chop it too finely – chop, chop and chop again!)
¾ pound 85/15 organic grass fed ground beef
½ teaspoon grapeseed oil
4 slider buns, lightly toasted
4 slices of aged sharp cheddar
12 thin slices of dill pickles
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
Place an oven rack to the middle position and preheat the oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit.
Fold to mix together bacon and ground beef. Form 4 equal sized patties, 3-inches wide by 1-inch thick, and place on a parchment-lined sheet tray.
Bake, flipping the burgers at the 10-minute mark, until the internal temperature of the burger reaches 130 degrees Fahrenheit (use a digital thermometer), approximately 20 minutes.
Place a large sauté pan over medium high heat and add the grapeseed oil. Let pan sit over medium-high heat for a full minute, or until the oil just begins to smoke. Swirl the oil in the pan to coat the bottom evenly. Using a paper towel, dab the top of the burgers and add the burgers to the pan, dry side down, and cook for 45 seconds, just enough to sear the bottom side. Using a metal spatula, flip and sear the opposite side for another 45 seconds. Transfer burgers to a plate and let rest for 5 minutes.
Spread homemade barbecue sauce on bottom side of bun. Place burger on barbecue laden bun, add cheese and 3 slices of pickles each. Spread mayonnaise on top of bun. Put together and enjoy every bite.
Note: the USDA recommends that any ground meat be cooked until the internal temperature reaches 160 degrees Fahrenheit. That said, if you know where your meat comes from and who’s grinding it and you want a medium-rare or medium burger, like me, you may make the choice to do otherwise.