I suppose a hamburger recipe is not something you would expect to see in my recipe book. It seems to be too common, and who doesn’t know how to make a respectable hamburger? Well, by now you know my love of great food, so if I think I should provide you a hamburger recipe I have a very good reason.
My love of bleu cheese and bacon burgers started in the early 1980’s when my DuPont® work friend Bill Rawles and I would do the occasional lunch at the Town Squire® restaurant in downtown Wilmington DE. Prior to that time I did not know just how good that kind of burger could be.
The secrets used by the restaurant cook were to grill the bun, use real high quality bleu cheese generously, and well-melted, not stupid bleu cheese dressing, and also plenty of crisp bacon, not to mention pretty decent beef. The idea is that he opted for quality more than profit, and that I respect, so that unnamed kitchen hero gets some recognition here. The flavors were intense. The serving temperature was hot and thus perfect. Zowie, what a great burger!
I have attempted to recreate that burger and I am pretty successful using food items available today, but nothing approaches my memory of the Town Squire® bleu cheese and bacon burger. It had to do with the intense flavor of the bleu cheese.
Oh, we typically each had a cold bottle of Michelob® beer and a small bag of potato chips with the burger, for back in those days there was no workplace bullshit about having a beer at lunch. What a yummy lunch! For that matter, we could also smoke in bars, restaurants and at work, and so we did. Alas, I can’t help but disrespect the overly restrictive laws and oppressive business practices today and the people who create(d) or sustain them, for I was and I am a child from a time of far greater liberty and freedom.
Well, that is enough yacking from me. Let’s get on with the recipe as this burger is too good to miss.
1/3 lb. Choice ground sirloin formed into a hamburger patty
1 Big Marty’s® sesame seed bun
1 1/2 oz. High quality Bleu or Roquefort cheese
2 strips Dietz and Watson® bacon or equivalent high quality bacon
Black pepper to taste
1 tbsp. peanut oil
1 tsp. butter
Veggies shown in the picture (optional)
Fry the bacon on medium low heat until it is somewhat crisp. You don’t want limp fat and you don’t want brittle bacon. Then put it on a paper towel to drain the fat. Break or cut the pieces in half.
Form the hamburger patty such that it has the same diameter as the Big Marty’s bun. That will result in having the raw meat thickness exactly right, and at the end of the frying the patty size will fit inside the bun perfectly.
Fry the hamburger patty on high heat in a small but thick bottomed pre-heated skillet after coating both sides of the raw burger with the peanut oil. It should be fried fairly crisp on both sides yet be medium rare on the inside, thus the use of high heat to keep the burger moist and tender inside yet crisp outside via fast frying. One to two minutes per side is plenty of frying time for a 1/3 pound patty if the skillet is sufficiently hot.
While the burger is frying, spread the butter on the opened Big Marty’s® bun and grill it on medium heat face down in a separate skillet. It should be grilled to a golden brown color and removed from the skillet to a warm oven.
When the burger is done frying remove it from the skillet to a saucer and coat the top evenly with the bleu cheese. Then put it under a broiler for 30 seconds to 1 minute until some of the cheese melts.
Remove the burger from the broiler and put the bacon pieces on top of the bleu cheese. Return the burger to the broiler for 20 seconds to re-warm the bacon and then remove it.
Put the burger into the warm grilled bun and serve it with the pepper on the side or in a shaker at the table.
Note that using the above cooking procedure results in the perfect temperature of all components at serving time, and that is how you make a perfect bleu cheese and bacon burger.
Note also that I used no salt, for the bleu cheese and the bacon both provide plenty of salt.