Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Bacon Jalapeño Jack Burgers on Pretzel Roll Buns

This is recipe is half of a two part series I’m doing.  I am guest posting over at Eat.Drink.Smile for my friend Beth as she spends time with her new baby (who I got to meet, and he is tiny, precious, and absolutely adorable!).  Eat.Drink.Smile talks about a lot of Nashville restaurants, something I wish I had more time for on my blog.  I took my guest posting opportunity on her site to write about all our favorite burger spots in Nashville.  Head on over to check it out!

Uh… yeah.  If this burger isn’t proof I love Nathan, I don’t know what is.  The man LOVES burgers.  Especially ones with bacon.  As soon as I saw Tina from My Life as a Mrs post this recipe I knew I’d be making it for my man soon!  I’ve made him turkey burgers, chicken burgers, and bison burgers, but have never actually made him a beef burger.  That’s because I rarely ever buy ground beef.  When there’s healthier options like ground chicken, ground turkey, and bison, I just don’t see the point in beef.  HOWEVER… once you know the health benefits of grass fed beef over grain/corn fed commercial beef, it totally changes the game. We can now enjoy ground beef on occasion, with less guilt.

What made this extra special, was that the beef & the bacon were grown in the county I went to high school, by a former high school classmate who runs Emerald Glen Farm.  And the cheese, Kenny’s Farmhouse Cheese, came from the county Nathan grew up in.  I got to go visit last year and check out how they make their cheeses!  You may recognize the names of these suppliers because many of the BEST restaurants in Nashville serve meat & poultry from Emerald Glen, and cheese from Kenny’s!

Also putting this over the edge in amazingness is the pretzel roll buns.  WOWZA!  As I mentioned a couple times over at Eat.Drink.Smile, the bun is an integral part of a burger.  Some restaurants overlook this, and serve subpar buns with great burgers.  The ones that get it right do so because they haven’t forgotten the importance of good buns!  😉  These buns are the perfect combination of a burger bun and a homemade pretzel.  (Recipe for pretzel buns coming tomorrow, today, it’s ALL about the burger.)  They are strong & sturdy, so they don’t mush under pressure.  They’ll hold up the strongest burger, but they don’t taste dry at all.

Overall this was a great combination of flavors, and made for a delicious burger.  The grass-fed beef was juicy & flavorful, with a lot less guilt.  The jalapeno jack cheese gave it the perfect kick, and paired great with the pickled jalapenos.  I have to brag a little and say this is on par with any of the burgers I mention in my Nashville Burger Round-up for Eat.Drink.Smile!


Bacon Jalapeño Jack Burgers

Yield: 4 burgers

My Life as a Mrs included a chipotle mayonnaise recipe, the first night I served these burgers I didn't make it, as Nathan doesn't like mayo. The second time I did make the mayo, and it was good, but you won't miss it if you don't make it.


For the Chipotle Mayonnaise:
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1-2 chipotle peppers
2 teaspoons adobo sauce*

For the Burgers:
1 1/3 pounds ground beef (I highly recommend grass-fed beef)
A sprinkle of salt, pepper, garlic powder
4 rounds of red onion
4 slices jack cheese (pepperjack, colby jack, jalapeño jack, etc)
8 slices crispy cooked bacon
16-20 pickled jalapeno slices
4 pretzel rolls (or other rolls if you choose)

*Note: You can find cans of chipotle peppers in adobo sauce in the Ethnic aisle at your grocery store. Store unused peppers in an airtight container in refrigerator, or freeze for later use.


For the Chipotle Mayonnaise:
Mix together ingredients until combined.

For the Burgers:
Divide the ground beef into four 1/3 pound burgers. Patty them out and set them on a large plate. Season with a simple sprinkling of salt, pepper, and garlic powder (make sure you season both sides). Set aside until ready to grill (or pan fry).

Heat grill (or pan) to medium to medium-high heat and grill for a 4-7 minutes on each side until desired doneness. During last minute of cooking - add a slice of cheese to each burger and close cover until cheese begins to melt. While the burgers are cooking, add the onion sliced and allow them to char a bit on each side and begin to soften. Remove burger and onions from grill and allow to rest for 2-3 minutes before serving.

Place a burger on each bun and top with 2 slices of bacon and 4-5 jalapeno slices. Slather some of the chipotle mayo on the top bun and place a grilled onion round on top. Add a little lettuce if you so desire and place to halves of the bun together.

adapted from My Life as a Mrs.

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