Saturday, March 2, 2013

Manchego Jalapeno Burgers

One of the food trends that we discussed at the Kingsford Invitational* back in November was Beer Goes Gourmet.

Beer Goes Gourmet
While wine used to be the go-to beverage for gourmands, beer is asserting itself both in the kitchen and on the table.  For a marinade or braising liquid, it simultaneously tenderizes while enhancing the smoky flavors of meat cooked on the grill.  Since the United States currently has the highest number of breweries since the pre-Prohibition era, now is the time to experiment with unique brews and barbecue.  So, crack open a six-pack and save some for Chris Lilly's Shock Top Honey Mustard Glaze ~reprinted courtesy of Kingsford
This burger is inspired by that.  Instead of just throwing on a piece of cheese, I made a veloute sauce for the cheese sauce base but instead of stock, I used beer as the liquid.  I used a lager to contrast the spicy jalapeno and briny manchego cheese.

Manchego Jalapeno Burgers, Big Green Egg burger recipe, kamado grill burger recipe, grill dome burger recipe, kamado joe burger recipe
Manchego Jalapeno Burgers

Prep Time: 20 min
Cook Time: 20 min

Ingredients (4 burgers)
    You'll need
    • 1 1/3 pounds ground round or ground chuck
    • 1 tsp salt
    • 1/2 tsp black pepper
    • 1/2 tsp granulated garlic
    • 4 hamburger buns
    • desired toppings such as pickles, lettuce, tomato, and red onion
    For the Manchego Jalapeno Cheese Sauce
    • 1 T butter
    • 1 clove garlic, finely minced
    • 1 T all purpose flour
    • 3/4 c Stella Artois beer
    • 1 c manchego cheese, shredded
    • 1 t cilantro, finely chopped
    • 1/2 to 1 t minced fire roasted jalapeno (see notes)
    • 1/4 t smoked paprika
    • 1/8 t salt
    • 1/8 t pepper
    • 1 T non-fat Greek yogurt or sour cream
    1. Season the beef with salt, pepper, and garlic. Divide into 4 equal portions (5.3 oz by weight) and form into patties 5" in diameter. Place in the refrigerator.
    2. Melt butter in a pot over medium-high heat. Saute garlic for 1 minute and then stir in the flour to form a blond roux.
    3. Add the beer in 1/4 c increments, whisking continuously to blend between additions.  Simmer until slightly thickened, 7-10 minutes.
    4. Whisk in cheese in small batches until melted and smooth.
    5. Stir in the seasonings and yogurt. Taste and add salt/pepper to adjust if desired.
    6. Preheat a charcoal grill to 450f.
    7. Grill burgers until done, about 4 minutes per side.
    8. Place burgers on buns and ladle the cheese sauce over the patties. Add other toppings as desired.
    Fire roasted jalapeno note: For spicier sauce, use 1/2 Tbsp of jalapeno. If you prefer, you can use canned green chiles for convenience but I like the smoky flavor of roasting my own jalapeno.  Tips for fire roasting chile peppers

    Tip:  If your sauce gets too thick while sitting, just whisk in a little more beer (1/2 tablespoon at a time).
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    In the beer-food pairing class at Anheuser-Busch, we learned that lager has a crisp, dry finish that gives a perfect contrast to spicy cuisines.

    serated spoon, cleaning chile tool
    My favorite tool for peeling and seeding roasted chiles - a grapefruit spoon.  The serrated edges work wonders.
    I also made a version of the Chris Lilly's pickle recipe except the pickles weren't grilled and I sliced them instead of spears, still tastes great.

    I served this with sweet potato fries (from frozen, I didn't prep them myself) and a fry dipping sauce of mayo, Worcestershire sauce, cinnamon, and ginger.
    Manchego Burger, Big Green Egg burger recipe, kamado grill recipe

    *[Note: The Kingsford Invitational will be on television shortly, I'll let you know when it broadcasts.]

    Ribs Quickie
    I also smoked some pork back ribs (what most places market as "baby back" ribs) last weekend but I didn't do a post since it was nothing new.  Here's the condensed version.

    Big green egg ribs, how to remove rib membrane
    I remove spare rib membranes from the end but baby backs are easier to remove from the middle.
    mustard ribs, French's ribs, Big green egg ribs,
    A quick slather of yellow mustard as a binder.  I didn't mean to make the first two look like the letter A.

    seasoned BBQ ribs, BBQ rib prep
    Used Melissa Cookston's basic rub recipe.

    Smoked at 250f with cherry/hickory wood for almost 5 hours.  Spritzed with apple juice a few times.  Never foiled.

    I overlapped them a little to get them to fit.
    Never got any plated shots the first night.

    But they were good leftovers the next night, albeit much darker after reheating and second dose of Blues Hog.
    That is one of the best things about being a BBQ hound - knowing you have a bunch of leftover BBQ in the fridge for quick dinners during the week!