I'm a firm believer in the saying "it's what's on the inside that counts" and when it comes to burgers, that's especially true. I'm also an equal opportunity burger eater as long as it doesn't contain cheese or wheat. A great veggie burger is delicious, as is a chicken or turkey burger (cooked to perfection), but when it comes to any other meat, I like to mix a variety of flavors together. In addition to mixed meats, a great burger benefits from other ingredients to help pump up the flavor.
Chopped onion, chopped garlic, hot peppers, and/or good seasoning are important on the inside if you like a well favored burger. Another thing I love is a variety of spices. One night we might make burgers with a Moroccan flare, another night we'll turn to Greek cuisine and, when we want something quick and easy,we'll stick with a simple, what you might call the American burger. In actuality we rarely eat burgers, but when we do, the one thing we really want is flavor (and heat)!
In no particular order I give you my 10 Favorite Burger Toppings:
1. Jalapeno-chopped, fresh, pickled, red, green, in a sauce, sliced--it's all good (although I don't care to have my head blown off)
2.Tomato - fresh from the garden is best
3. Caramelized onion - WallaWallas or Videlias are good, but Utah Spanish Sweets are my personally favorite. They are locally grown, always available. We grow a few in our garden and they're deliciously sweet. If you're not familiar with how to caramelize follow the link.
4. Fry Sauce - a favorite sauce of almost every Utahn I know. It's a mix of mayo, catsup and a variety of other things which can vary from person to person, place to place. We make it hot by adding sriracha.
5. Coleslaw - any tangy mix of cabbage and other veggies tossed in a refresh, flavorful dressing.
6. Sauteed mushrooms - hot from the grill.
7. Crisp bacon- either sliced or chopped
8. Guacamole - Freshly made, thick and spicy, it's all you need.
9.Potato Chips - Love that crunch!
10. Chimichurri sauce- Talk about flavor, it adds a punch of deliciousness and tartness.
There are many chimichurri sauce recipes and I recommend an internet search to find one to your liking. The sauce can be adjusted for ingredients you have on hand or changed to your desired taste (don't like heat, add a more mild pepper). I use whatever leafy herb I have in the garden and have used other vinegars, or even lemon juice, for the acid. Have fun, play around, enjoy your burger YOUR WAY!
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon kosher salt, more as needed
3 to 4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced or minced
1 shallot, finely chopped
1 Fresno chile or red jalapeño, finely chopped
2 cups minced fresh cilantro
1 cup minced flat-leaf parsley
1/3 cup finely chopped fresh oregano
3/4 cups extra virgin olive oil
Combine vinegar, 1 teaspoon salt, garlic, shallot, and chile in a medium bowl and let stand for 10 minutes. Stir in cilantro, parsley, and oregano. Using a fork, whisk in oil. Use as a marinade and/or a sauce on any cut of beef or lamb.
Mix it up for the 4th and celebrate your holiday with some heat!
Enjoy, my friends, be safe and cool. Ice tea will be de rigueur at our place! (Maybe a lemon drop martini, too.)