I have a lot of cookery books. A hell of a lot. And I make a lot of recipes. This, out of all the recipes in all the books I own, is one of my absolute favourite things to eat. Jamie has such an amazing talent for packing all recipes with tonnes of flavour and even as a fairly experienced cook I still get surprised and excited by the tricks and tips he shares to create the most awesome food. Like here, for instance, brushing the burgers with mustard and tabasco as they cook to create a gnarly flavoursome crust is just fab. I urge you with every bone in my body to make these burgers, you won’t regret it.
This recipe is taken from Jamie’s Comfort Food book, which is a total pleasure to read and cook from. You can also find the recipe on his website, which I have linked you to here. Or, just stick around The Gammon Kitchen and keep reading below to see how you turn a few ingredients into one of the tastiest morsels that you will ever have the pleasure of eating.
To make the patties, get yourself some good quality fatty minced beef. Jamie recommends 800g of minced chuck steak from the butchers, I used 15% fat mince from Sainsbury’s and only 500g to feed four which makes really decent sized burgers. Simply mould them into patty shapes using wet hands. You don’t need to add anything else to the meat. Pop these into the fridge for a bit.
Whilst the burgers are resting and firming up, make all the other bits which will adorn your burger:
- Slice up a red onion and leave to sit in a bowl with a splash of white wine vinegar and some salt.
- Slice up some gherkins and leave these to one side
- Finely shred half an iceberg lettuce and mix it up with 2 tablespoons of mayo, a tablespoon of tomato ketchup, a teaspoon of Tabasco Chipotle sauce, a teaspoon of Worcestershire sauce and a teaspoon of brandy or bourbon. I used Jack Daniels, you can leave the booze out completely if you prefer. Season it up and let it sit
- Fry off 8 slices of streaky bacon
To cook the burgers, brush them with a little bit of oil and season with salt and pepper before adding to a pan over a high heat. Press down with a fish slice and flip after a minute. Brush with a little American style mustard and a drop of Tabasco sauce, leave for another minute, flip over again and brush the other side. Cook the burgers through, flipping every minute, then add two slices of bacon to each burger then a slice of Red Leicester cheese. Add a splash of water to the pan and put a lid on to create a nice steamy environment to melt the cheese and meld all the flavours together.
Split four brioche style buns in half and whack in the oven for a few minutes to toast, then brush with any fat you have left in the pan from cooking the bacon earlier.
To assemble your burgers, put a mound of the saucy lettuce onto the bottom half of the bun, add your bacon and cheese topped burger to it, then top with the red onions that are now lightly pickled and some sliced gherkins. Add a little squirt of ketchup to the top half of the bun, pop it on, squish it down and apply to face.
SO. DAMN. GOOD.
It’s a mess to cook and an even bigger mess to eat but totally worth it.