You can never have too many ways to make a good burger on the grill. Since this is the time of year that you can experiment a little, I went out and found this recipe from chef Chris Santos (frequently a judge on Food Network’s “Chopped”) for his Ultimate Backyard Burger along with some smoked chili ketchup to help spice up the barbecue results a little.
Smoked Chili Ketchup
1 cup minced shallots
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons honey
1 cup canned chopped tomatoes
1/2 cup corn syrup
1/2 cup sherry vinegar
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 teaspoons chipotle puree
Vegetable stock, if needed
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
12 slices bacon
4 ounces very soft butter
3 pounds ground beef
3 tablespoons paprika
1 tablespoon cumin
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Olive oil, for brushing
6 hamburger buns
6 slices American cheese
For the ketchup: Saute the shallots and garlic in the olive oil in a large skillet over low heat until translucent, about 4 to 6 minutes. Add the honey and cook for 2 to 3 minutes more. Add the tomatoes, corn syrup, vinegar, sugar and chipotle puree and simmer for 30 minutes. Puree the mixture in a blender or food processor, adding some vegetable stock if the ketchup seems too thick. Season with salt and pepper and set aside.
For the burgers: Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Heat a grill to high heat. Brush both sides of the bacon slices with some of the smoked chili ketchup. Place the bacon on a baking sheet and bake for 15 to 20 minutes, turning halfway through.
Gently fold the butter into the ground beef along with the paprika, cumin and Worcestershire sauce. Form the beef mixture into 6 patties and sprinkle both sides liberally with salt and pepper.
Brush the hamburger buns on each side with olive oil and grill the insides of the buns until golden brown, about 1 to 2 minutes. Grill the burgers until medium rare, 3 to 4 minutes per side, or to your own particular liking of doneness. Once you flip the burger, add a slice of the cheese to each burger and keep the cover of the grill closed to allow the cheese to melt.
Spread the smoked ketchup on one side of the bun and place the burger on the bun cheese side up and top with 2 strips of bacon.
I loved the smoked ketchup. It had some nice bite to it from the chipotle puree and had great flavor from the shallots, vinegar and brown sugar. I personally did not put any cheese on my burger but I think it tasted great all the same. Putting some of the butter into the meat along with spices really added to the burger itself. This is definitely a recipe I will try again. Unfortunately, I forgot to take pictures of this one when it was done, but I will try to get to it the next time I make them.
That’s all I have for today. Check back next time to see what recipes I will be trying out, including a grilled sausage recipe, some beer battered fish and pulled pork sliders. They all sound pretty yummy so you will want to check them out. As always, if you ever have any questions or a recipe you would be interested in seeing, just drop me a note in the comment sections on the blog or you can catch up with me on Facebook or Twitter. Until next time, enjoy the rest of your day and enjoy your meal!