Grillin’ My Way Through Summer
My five favorite ways to enjoy a burger
Ah, summer time! Hot sunny days, cool drink in hand and the BBQ all fired up. I love that pretty much anything can be put on the grill to instantly enhance its flavor profiles. Steaks, burgers, veggies, fruits...you name it!
Well! This season, I am particularly obsessed with trying out variations of burgers. I love bold flavors, and so my inspiration usually takes that turn. Following are my five favorite ways to enjoy a burger this summer.
- Beef patties stuffed with gorgonzola and caramelized onions. It's a surprise in the mouth as you bite into the burger and delicious salty cheese oozes out along with sweet caramelized onions. I feel that the two flavors compliment each other really well.
- Burgers topped or stuffed with swiss cheese and pickled jalapeño. Swiss cheese is delish on burgers. But to add a burst of flavor, I do a really quick pickle of sliced jalapeño in a simple mixture of white wine vinegar, salt and sugar. Soak the jalapeños in it for an hour or so — and they are good to go. I find it takes a bit of the spicy edge off the pepper while adding beautiful tart and sweet notes to it.
- Burgers topped with green chimichurri sauce. I love ordering skirt steaks with green chimichurri sauce in restaurants. So why not try that same flavor profile on a burger? There are many variations of green chimichurri sauce...mine usually has equal parts of chopped cilantro and parsley tossed in lemon juice and olive oil, a dash of chopped jalapeno peppers and garlic (of course), along with salt and black pepper to taste.
- Burgers topped with smokey red chimichurri. Loving this right now! I recently came across a Bobby Flay recipe, where he topped his steaks with this sauce. I made the sauce at home one day and now I can’t get enough of it. It's made with chipotle pepper in adobo sauce (just pick a can from Whole Foods), chopped parsley, smoked paprika, red wine vinegar, red pepper flakes, olive oil and garlic. Absolutely delicious! If ready in your fridge, you will find yourselves using this sauce in most everything you eat. Look up Bobby Flay’s recipe for this sauce on Food Network.
- Finally, if you crave something really unique — then just switch to lamb burgers topped with harissa (I usually get a can of readymade sauce from The Pantry in Fairfield) and tzatziki sauce (most grocery stores have it these days). The lamb meat has so much of its own unique flavor — which you can easily bring out with some salt and pepper. Or even better, add some toasted and then ground cumin to further enhance it. The harissa will add a bold spicy punch while the creamy tzatziki sauce will instantly cool your palate.
Well! This is what I am enjoying right now. How about you?