May 252011

With the 1st major cookout holiday of the year right around the corner, I took some time to mix up some burgers.  Being the chef that I strive to be, I never really do just the simple — well I do, but what fun is cooking if you don’t make it personal?  So I made three burger recipes.  The first has been a family staple for years, garlic and onion.  The second is really an experiment that uses Asian flavors.  The third is my first attempt at a chipotle burger.  Read on for the recipes…


Garlic and Onion Burgers

  • 3 pounds ground beef
  • 1 large onion (about one pound)
  • 5 large cloves of garlic
  • 6 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire (soy can be substituted)
  • about 1/2 cup of bread crumbs (I used Italian for mine)
  1. Chop the onions and garlic.  I pulsed them in my food processor until I was happy with the size.
  2. Put all the ingredients in a large mixing bowl and combine.  If you have a KitchenAid-style mixer, low for five minutes is just about right.
  3. Taste test — no, not raw!!!  Take a small sample and cook it up.  Add salt and pepper if you wish to adjust the flavor.
  4. Makes about 12 burgers, depending on how large you make them.


Asian Burgers

  • 3 pounds of ground beef
  • 2 oz of fresh ginger, minced
  • 1 large onion, minced
  • 3 large cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 five star anise seed, ground to fine powder
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 cup of carrots.  I julienne cut mine and then chopped the match stick pieces into a quarter their original size.  I did this to give the burgers some added texture.
  • 1/2 cup of soy sauce
  • about 1 cup of Panko bread crumbs
  • 3 large eggs, beaten
  1. Add all the ingredients into a large mixing bowl EXCEPT FOR THE BREAD CRUMBS.  Combine these ingredients until well blended.  At this point your mix will be very wet.  If you have a big mixer I suggest you use it on low for about five minutes.
  2. Gradually add the Panko bread crumbs.  You want to add bread crumbs until the meat mix is firm but not too dry.  The best way I’ve found to test this is to shape a small burger from the mix.  If the burger sticks to my hand, the mix is too wet and I’ll add some more bread crumbs.  If the burger does not try to grab my hand at all, then the mix is too dry and I’ll add an egg to increase the moisture.


Chipotle Burgers

  • 2 pounds of ground beef
  • 1 large onion
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 or 2 large chipotle peppers (you can buy cans of these at Walmart or if you have a smoker you can smoke some Jalapenos).  One pepper did not quite give me the heat I wanted; I will use 2 next time.
  • 1 tbsp of Worcestershire
  • 4 large eggs, beaten
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • about 1 cup bread crumbs.  I actually used stale bread in mine, because I did not want to use Italian bread crumbs for a Mexican style burger.
  1. Set aside the bread crumbs.
  2. Combine the remaining ingredients in a large mixing bowl.  Again I opted to use my mixer.
  3. Add the bread crumbs until you have the texture as described above for Asian Burgers.


You might notice that there is no information on shaping the burgers or actually cooking them.  That is because I figure most of you already know how to do that.  Remember ground beef is safe to serve at 155°F internal temperature (no pink).  Also remember that meat packaged as “hamburger” is not just ground beef.  While the cuts of meat are the same, the butchers are allowed to add up to an extra 30% fat content to the mix.


Here’s a useful link for cooking temperatures and food handling in general, ServSafe (PDF file).

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