Fresh Ground Bacon Burger with Homemade Bun
September 3, 2011
This is no ordinary burger, in fact, it is quite possibly the best burger I have ever had. I know, it is a bold statement, but one spoken from the
stomach heart. We make burgers once a month or so, usually as an easy dinner. That is how this meal began, as an answer to what to make for dinner that would be easy, popular, and satisfying. That was all well and good, until I got it in my head that I could make everything from scratch. Oh, and add bacon to the beef. Whoa.
After we picked up a meat grinder attachment for our Kitchenaide, we discovered the magic of burgers made with freshly ground meat. This burger includes not only beef chuck roast, but also a very special not-so-secret ingredient, bacon! This was a perfect use for some bacon ends we had from our piggy in the freezer. Using a ration of 4 parts beef to 1 part bacon, I ground the two meats with the course grinding plate. After lightly tossing them to mix, I loosely formed them into patties. I pressed the meat just enough so they would hold together on the grill, but so there were still some small air spaces between the meat pieces. This gives a place for the juices and fat to collect (did I mention this is not a low-fat meal). Grilled over medium high and plopped on a fresh toasted bun, these burgers taste amazing. The bacon flavor is strong enough to make itself known, without being overpowering. The best part is that unlike a burger topped with slices of bacon, the bacon does not slide out of the bun as you try to bite through it. The flavors of the beef and bacon are perfectly blended. And then there is the bun…
This recipe came from King Arthur Bread. They were so good that my son declared, “Mom, these are CRAZY. I never want to buy buns again.” (I love that my kids love to eat!) The recipe uses an egg and some butter, so the buns are very tender and hold together well under the pressure of the burger and condiments. They browned up beautifully and some extra butter brushed over the top yields a very tender top, making it easy to bite into the burger. They came together very quickly and rose through the day. The recipe makes 8 buns large enough for 1/4 pound burgers or bigger. This is enough for two meals for my family, so I froze half of the buns for another dinner. You could also make the buns smaller and use them for sliders. They would be delicious with pulled pork. Mmmmm… We will definitely make these again.
Ground Bacon Burgers
makes 5 quarter pound burgers
1 pound beef chuck roast
1/4 pound bacon
salt and pepper
Grind the beef and bacon with a course grinding plate. Lightly toss to mix meat. If you do not have a grinder, ask your butcher to grind it for you or buy ground beef and finely mince the bacon.
Form the meat into 5 patties. Be gentle with the meat, pressing it just enough so that it holds together.
Heat your grill to high. Salt and pepper the burgers to taste. Grill on high heat for 4 minutes or so on the first side, until the bottom is browned. Flip and cook for an additional 4 minute or so until done. Cook these burgers to medium or more- rare bacon is not good. Do not worry about the burgers being dry, the bacon keeps them very moist.
Serve with Homemade Burger Buns and your favorite toppings, perhaps some Chipotle Mayo. Blue cheese or gorgonzola is highly recommended!!!
Here is a printer-friendly version of the recipe: Fresh Ground Bacon Burgers
Homemade Burger Buns
adapted from King Arthur Flour
makes 8 4-inch diameter buns
3/4 cup water
1 tablespoon yeast
2 tablespoons butter, melted
3 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup sugar
1 1/4 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons butter, melted
Mix all ingredients, except the butter that is reserved for the topping. I use a standing mixer for this, but you can do it by hand as well. Knead until all the ingredients are incorporated and the dough ball is smooth.
Place in a clean, oiled bowl and cover. Let rise until dough is doubled (1-2 hours).
Punch down dough, divide into 8 equal parts. Roll each piece into a ball. Press each dough ball into a disc 3-inches wide. (This will make a bun big enough for a 1/4 pound burger ). Place on an oiled baking sheet. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise until puffy (about 1 hour).
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Brush tops of buns with melted butter. Bake for 15-18 minutes. Remove from oven and brush with the remaining butter. Transfer buns to a cooling rack and allow to cool completely. Once cool, slice buns in half horizontally and fill with your favorite foods, like Ground Bacon Burgers or Southwestern Chicken Burgers!
Any buns that you are not using that day can be frozen for future use. Place in a sealed bag and remove as much air as possible. Then freeze.
Here is a printer-friendly version of the recipe: Homemade Burger Buns
You can find a link to this recipe at Yeastspotting.
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