February 14, 2015

Burgers and Romance: Smoked Bacon and Cheddar BBQ Burger

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I really love Valentine’s Day. A day full of love! It is a great day to show extra love for those in your life. So often the day is celebrated with dining out. I am a florist by trade, so going out to dinner on the day of love is not a possibility. Particularly after working for 12 hours! Before I began working at the flower shop, my husband and I would celebrate the day by going to one of the best burger places in Philadelphia. Burgers have since become our Valentine’s Day tradition.

Burgers and romance. Synonymous, no?

Now that my Valentine’s Day is spent celebrating others’ love with flowers, it’s great to come home  from a long day at the shop and unwind by cooking burgers for my family. One of my favorite ways to eat a burger is with cheese (yum), bacon (because why not?), and caramelized onions (the trifecta).

The way to get the most out of this burger recipe? Make the most of your ShopRite! Peruse the bakery section and see what beautiful rolls the bakers created that day. One of my favorite people to talk to at my ShopRite is the butcher. They are a resource of knowledge and will give you the best cut of meat and will tailor it specifically to your wants. By getting the freshest and best items your ShopRite has to offer, you will take this delicious recipe to the next level.

Yields: 4 Servings

4 freshly baked rolls from your ShopRite (I chose ciabatta)
1 and 1/2 lbs 90% lean ground beef
1 small onion, peeled, halved, and sliced thinly
3 TBS unsalted butter
Pinch of granulated sugar
4 slices smoked bacon
4 slices of cheddar cheese
1/4 cup of ShopRite Barbecue Sauce
4 pieces of lettuce
Salt & pepper

1. Melt 1 TBS of butter over medium-low heat, add the onions and sugar, cook for about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the remaining butter and stir until the onions become brownish in color. Set aside.
2. Separate the beef into four sections and form patties, season with salt and pepper. Place a deep thumb print into the middle of one side of each patty.
3. In a large pan, cook the bacon until slightly crispy (approximately 3 to 5 minutes), reserve the grease, and drain bacon on a paper towel and set aside.
4. In the same pan you cooked the bacon raise the heat to medium high, place the four patties. Cook on the first side for 3 to 4 minutes, flip and cook for an additional 4 minutes for medium-rare doneness, an additional 5 minutes for medium doneness, and approximately 7 more minutes until well-done.
5. When there is 1 minute of cooking time left for your desired burger doneness, add a slice of cheese on top of each patty.
6.  You can optionally toast the rolls for an added burger bonus! My favorite way to do so is to throw halved rolls onto the same skillet I had been cooking on to soak up the juices, as well as nicely crisp!
7. To construct your burger, place the freshly minuted cheeseburger on the toasted bun, top with one slice of bacon cut in half, 2 TBS of caramelized onions, 1 TBS of barbecue sauce, and lettuce.

Emily Burger

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