Tuesday, August 2, 2011

You say poblano, I say Green Chile Cheeseburger!

A few years ago, I was absolutely convinced that I would win the HGTV Dream Home in Santa Fe, New Mexico. I loved that place. I was so convinced, that after hearing someone talk on Splendid Table on NPR about the New Mexican staple, the Green Chile Cheeseburger, I spent quite a while trying to figure out a recipe. This is what I came up with. A wonderfully juicy, spicy, cheesy version of the original! Although I didn't win my dream home in the mountains, I won't stop making this delicious burger!

Green Chile Cheeseburgers 

Makes 4 burgers:


4 "Hatch" green chiles (if available) or 2 large poblano peppers
1 smallish yellow or red onion, thickly sliced but do not separate into rings
garlic powder
1 pound ground chuck
Kraft cheese slices (I'm normally a stickler about processed food, but here it just works!)
1 tomato
ketchup, optional (a real "no-no" in New Mexico!)
onion sandwich rolls
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper


First you need to roast the poblano peppers. Click here to find out how. Next, drizzle the onion slices with olive oil, salt, and pepper on each side. Grill (I use a grill pan) the slices until soft and no longer opaque.  Now chop up the peppers and onions into the same size pieces. (I do it about 1/4 to 1/2 inch size.) Mix them together and plop back into a bowl. Heat up a saute pan and cook the poblano/onion mixture for a few minutes. Throw in a good dash of garlic powder, salt, pepper, and stir. This step is important. If you don't heat the mixture up the flavor is just not there. When done, drop into the same bowl and cover until ready to make burgers.

Divide the meat into 4 balls. Flatten with the back of a plate. Make them bigger than the rolls so they will fit after cooking, as they will shrink. Season liberally with salt and pepper on each side.

On a grill (but I have cooked them in a skillet) cook the burgers. I do about 5 minutes the first side. After flipping the first time, top each burger with as much poblano/onion mix that will stay on top. Continue to cook about 3 to 5 minutes on the second side. Now, a couple of minutes before done, I top each burger with 2 slices of Kraft cheese slices (don't judge me). Once the burgers look good and the cheese has melted smooth, remove.

Cover each side of the buns with some mayo. Put burgers on the buns. I top with some lettuce and a slice of tomato. I don't put the ketchup on the buns, just on the side to dip the burger in bite by bite. If you put it on the burger, the green chili flavor gets lost.

I think these are best served with roasted potato wedges (seasoned with cumin, paprika, salt, and pepper) and a nice cold Shiner Bock from my childhood state of Texas. Prosit!

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