Candied-Onion Bacon Burgers with Steamed Cheddar
Makes 3 burgers
1 lb 80%/20% ground beef
1 Tbsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
3 tsp. vegetable oil
1 Tbsp. unsalted butter
3 garlic cloves
3 sprigs fresh thyme
6 oz Cabot extra-sharp cheddar cheese
6 slices of bacon (thin), for serving
3 pub rolls split and toasted
1 beefsteak tomato
1/2 cup candied onions
MISE EN PLACE
Peel and smash the garlic, cube cheese, split pub rolls, slice the tomatoes.
Prepare the candied onions (see below).
Cook the bacon to not-quite crisp, 3-4 minutes per side. Drain on paper towels.
Form the meat into 4 patties, about 3/4-inch thick. Using your thumb, make an indentation in the middle of each patty. (This keeps the burger from cooking unevenly and swelling in the middle). Season the patties on both sides, using 1 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper for each one.
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Heat 1 Tbsp. of the olive oil in a large cast-iron skillet over high heat until just smoking. Place the patties in the pan and reduce the heat to medium-high, and cook for 4 minutes (never, never press on a burger – you’re just squeezing out the juices).
Flip the patties, add the butter, garlic cloves and thyme to the pan.
Once the butter has melted, tip the pan and baste each burger a few times, spooning the hot butter over it. Continue to cook, basting often, until the burgers are well-browned on the bottom and the meat is medium-rare, 5-6 minutes. Remove the burgers from the hot pan and let rest for 5 minutes.
While burgers are resting, steam the cheese and toast both halves of the pub rolls.
To build the burgers: spread onions on each bottom roll, top with 2 slices of tomato, then beef, bacon, and finally spoon the hot cheese over all, and top with the top of the roll.
Makes 1 cup
1 Tbsp. butter
1 large sweet onions, thinly sliced
2 garlic cloves, chopped
2 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves removed
2 tsp sugar
2 tsp kosher salt
Dash of freshly ground black pepper
2 Tbsp cup white wine vinegar
Melt the butter in a large saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the onions, garlic and thyme leaves, and stir. Cover and cook, stirring frequently, until the onions are deep golden brown, 30-45 minutes.
Add the sugar, salt and pepper. Stir, replace the lid and cook for 10 minutes.
Add the vinegar and deglaze the pan. Cook away the excess liquid (about 10 minutes) then set aside. Use warm.
Insert the strainer.
Divide 6 oz of Cabot extra-sharp cheddar cheese between 3 ramekins or small oven safe bowls. When the water begins to boil, set the ramekins in the strainer. Then cover the pasta pot, trapping the steam inside.
In about two minutes, check to see if the cheese has melted completely. Then use a spoon to scoop it out onto each hamburger. (Careful, it’s HOT!)