August is National Burger Month and boy are we celebrating this year! Kita of Girl Carnivore pulled together 30 amazing bloggers, one for every day of the month. Each day we are featuring another new burger and the talented person who created it. Follow #BurgerMonth to check them all out! And while you’re visiting each blog, why not subscribe. These are some of the most talented folks I know and I look forward to their creative inspirations every day. I am honored to be included in this group!
I love the flavors of the Southwest, particularly New Mexico. I thought I knew what southwestern cuisine was until The Artist and I took a vacation in Santa Fe and Taos. Boy were our eyes opened, and it only took about 30 minutes from the time we landed until we had our first meal and nearly incinerated our mouths on the chips and salsa. We were so used to California-style salsa that we dove in with abandon and at almost the same moment for both of us, the chiles hit. Once again we dove in, but this time it was into our margaritas, LOL.
If you haven’t been to New Mexico, the cuisine is a blend of three primary influences, Anglo, Indian, and Mexican, proof that when people live in harmony and share traditions, delicious things can happen. The two primary regional sauces are made from the same chiles – the green sauce from fresh chiles and the red from dried ones. The chile capital of our country, and some say the world, is a little town called Hatch, NM. Just North of El Paso, it is a tiny dot on the map, but known world wide. Each year at harvest time, usually August into early September, visitors descend like locusts on this town, in search of authentic fresh Hatch green chiles to take home. During the annual Hatch Chile Festival, there are so many people roasting chiles that the entire area is perfumed from morning to night with smoke from the fires, like the heady aromas during crush in Napa Valley.
This year Melissa’s Produce is hosting chile roasting days across the country. I can’t wait for our local events. Check out this list of dates and locations for 2015 and find the one closest to you. It’s like having a bite of New Mexico in your neighborhood for the day. I’ve got my calendar marked, how about you?
Green chile cheeseburgers became popular in the 1950s as people stopped at roadhouses along Route 66 for meals. Thanks to newspaper and magazine articles and features on cooking shows, there has been a recent resurgence of interest in this popular culinary creation. There is even a Green Chile Cheeseburger Trail in New Mexico where you can sample variations at over 200 restaurants, cafes, and drive-ins all along the path. The best of the best were chosen when 8000 locals and visitors voted for their favorites. The next time you are in the area, check it out!
In honor of the infamous Hatch chile and our love of the foods of New Mexico, I am sharing my Santa Fe Green Chile Bacon Cheeseburgers for #BurgerMonth 2015. Instead of the typical green chile strips laid across the burger, I thought it would be fun to take a different look at a sweet & spicy topping by caramelizing Vidalia onions and tossing in some chopped Hatch chiles. Add a little bacon – who doesn’t love bacon – and some melted cheese to cool things down a touch. Yee haw, we’ve got some deliciousness going on at our house!
When beef patties hit a hot a charcoal grill, especially seasoned buffalo burgers like I made today, they sizzle away, sending tantalizing smoke into the air, drawing the neighbors to your fence. It doesn’t get much better – the lingering scent of summer fun. And I’m using my Char-Broil Kettleman, the same one that you can win if you enter the giveaway below!! You definitely want this grill – it is fantastic and totally different than anything I’ve ever cooked on. Put it on your wish list and hopefully you’ll win one!!
OK, enough talk, let’s get to the good stuff … 😉
Jane’s Tips and Hints:
If you are roasting and cutting your own chiles, I suggest you wear latex gloves while working. It will save you from getting the juices on your hands. Wearing gloves helps protect my hands from getting too dried out from constant washing. They also make filling the charcoal chimney a lot cleaner job.
Canned Hatch chiles are gluten-free! Use gluten-free buns or wrap your burgers in lettuce leaves (cut out the tough stems) for a safe and delicious gluten-free version.
- Green Chile Aioli
- 1/4 cup mayonnaise
- 1/2 to 1 tsp green chile infused oil
- 1 tsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1/4 tsp kosher or fine sea salt, optional
- Caramelized Onions and Green Chiles
- 2 tbsp butter
- 1 large Vidalia or other sweet onion, trimmed and finely chopped
- 1 (4 oz) can mild or hot chopped fire roasted Hatch green chiles, drained
- Santa Fe Buffalo Burgers
- 1-1/2 lb ground buffalo or 80/20 beef
- 2 tbsp minced bacon fat (trimmed before cooking) if using ground buffalo
- 1 tsp ground ancho chile powder
- 3/4 tsp kosher or fine sea salt
- 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 1/4 tsp garlic powder (not garlic salt)
- 1/4 tsp onion powder (not onion salt)
- 1/4 tsp ground coriander
- 1/4 tsp ground chipotle
- Slices of queso fresco, mozzarella or Monterey Jack cheese
- 8 cooked bacon strips
- Lettuce leaves, tough stem ends removed
- Green Chile Aioli (from above)
- Caramelized onions and green chiles (from above)
- Brioche buns or gluten-free buns
- Make the Aioli: In a small bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise and green chile oil. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
- Caramelize the Onions and Chiles: In a large nonstick skillet, melt the butter over medium high heat. Add the onions and drained chiles. Reduce the heat to medium or medium-low and cook slowly for about 45 minutes to an hour, stirring often. When the liquid from the vegetables has evaporated, they will slowly turn golden brown and the sugars will start to caramelize. Keep stirring so that they don't burn. When they are sweet and softened, remove from the heat and set aside.
- Cook the bacon while the onions are caramelizing. When cooked through but not too crispy, transfer to a paper towel-lined plate and set aside.
- Make the Burgers: Place the meat in a bowl and add the minced bacon fat (if using buffalo) and seasonings. Use your clean, damp hands to mix the seasonings evenly throughout the meat. Divide into 4 equal portions. Roll each one into a ball and then press into a flat, round disk. Place on a plate, cover, and refrigerate until ready to cook. Because buffalo cooks so much faster than regular beef, having the patties well chilled will help protect the center while the outside cooks.
- Build a medium-hot charcoal fire or preheat your gas grill on High. If using a charcoal grill, light the coals in a charcoal chimney instead of using lighter fluid. This will make your food taste so much better! Scrape the grates clean and wipe with a light coating of oil to help keep the burgers from sticking.
- Cook the Burgers: When the grates are hot and the coals have burned down and are covered with ash, place the burgers on the grill. Cook until the meat easily releases from the grates, about 2 to 3 minutes. If it resists lifting, give it a little longer. Flip and cook the second side another 2 to 3 minutes; after 1 minute add a scoop of the onion/chile mixture and top with a slice of cheese to melt. Buffalo should be served medium-rare to medium for the best flavor. Transfer the cooked burgers to a clean baking sheet and set them on the counter to rest while you get the plates ready.
- Assemble and Serve: Split the rolls and lay a lettuce leaf on the bottom halves. Add a burger patty on top of the lettuce, and add 2 slices of bacon, crisscrossed. Spread some of the aioli on the top half of the buns and set them on the bacon. Serve immediately.
- Yield: 4 servings
Now, a party wouldn’t be awesome without prizes. And we have a pile of them for you from some great fans of burgers. A huge thank you to Char-Broil, Cabot Cheese, Le Creuset, Dreamfarm, Spiceologist & Woodbridge Wines for donating these incredible prices. Every day in August there will be a link to the giveaway – so be sure to visit each blog for the latest recipe and enter the giveaway! What’s included? Check out this list:
- 1 Char-Broil Kettleman™ TRU-Infrared™ 22.5″ Charcoal Grill
- 1 Le Creuset Signature 10-1/4″ Iron Handle Skillet
- 1 Set Dreamfarm Chopula & Clongs
- 1 Cabot Cheese Legacy Gift Box – 2 each Farmhouse Reserve, White Oak & Alpine Cheddar – 1 each New York Vintage & Seriously Sharp + 1 Wine Bottle Opener
- 1 Spiceologist 4 Pack of Grilling Rubs (Smoky Honey Habanero, Raspberry Chipotle, Greek Freak, and Black & Bleu)
- 2 Woodbridge Wine ‘Cue Sauce Packages (5 bottles each)
Here’s the winning Burger Month line-up so far:
1. Kita of Girl Carnivore … Cheddar Stuffed Apple Slaw Burger
2. Priscilla of She’s Cookin’ … Fig & Smoked Mozzarella Bison Burger
3. Erin of The Spiffy Cookie … Corn Fritter Breakfast Burger
4. Barb of Creative Culinary … Lamb & Goat Cheese Burger with Cabernet BBQ Sauce
5. Aly of Cooking in Stillettos … Queso Fundido Burger
6. Brandy of Nutmeg Nanny … BBQ Chicken Burger & Peach Corn Salsa
7. Megan of Country Cleaver … Tuscano Burger
8. Heather of Farmgirl Gourmet … Cuban Burger
9. Camilla of Culinary Adventures with Camilla … Salacia’s Sensational Surprise & Old Bay Fries
10. Christiane of Taking on Magazines … Double Decker Carolina Burger
11. Isabelle of Crumb: A Food Blog … Epic Brunch Burger
Create a New Tradition Today!
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