Jalapeno & ??? cheese *in*side my burgers
I like to make two thin wide beef patties, put some diced fresh peppers between them, press/crimp the edges, and grill them on my gas grill. Fattier beef works very well though leaner has its charms. The jalapenos will be fresh off the bush in my garden.
I'm thinking of adding some crumbles or shreds or slices of cheese between the patties. I'm thinking peppers in a molten cheese within beef sounds mighty tasty. Do you agree? Which kind(s) of cheese sound(s) good to you?
I've got gorgonzola, feta, Sharp! cheddar, mozzarella, and a few more on hand, more just around the corner....
I like a Greek burger, a burger with two slices of feta - one above and one below the meat. *Inside* the burger works just as well, I imagine. GREAT taste either way, just make sure you allow enough time for the cheese to melt. A good cheddar, yellow, not white, would be my second choice. Sharp cheddar, of course. Come to think of it, since you're including jalapenos, the cheddar is a must then! Go with the cheddar.
I'd suggest a good Mexican cheese. I've been smitten with queso fresco or Casera cheese. Its texture is moist and semi-firm, a bit mealy, and it slices well. It holds its shape when melted--it does not turn into a blob of goo. Nicely and lightly flavored, sort of like a very fresh domestic ricotta. The brand I buy here in Calif is El Mexicano brand, out of San Jose.
I've been using it instead of jack as I like the flavor and melted texture better. Quesadillas, tacos, enchiladas, stuffed poblanos, etc.
I take the jalapeno and stuff it with a seasoned cream cheese, roll the cream cheese in a shape that will fit inside the pepper, stuff the pepper, then put the stuffed peppers in the freezer for a few minutes, before putting it in the middle of the burger...It seems to "stay" better when put in the freezer...This is really delicious...I season the cream cheese with chili powder, garlic, and cumin...Sometimes I put a bit of salsa in the ground meat mixture...and sometimes I top the burgers with monterey jack with peppers...
Of the stuff you have on hand, I'd grate some cheddar.
If you're off to the store I'd pick up a little bit of Jack and mix it in with the cheddar.
I may also add some salsa to the meat but on top would work too. Some taco seasoning too.
I'd garnish with fresh tomato and guacamole.
Thanks everyone. I'm cooking/dining solo this week and bought one pound of 80% lean ground beef. (Store had six pkgs weighing 1.00 pound! How do they do that?) Scramble an egg with ~1tsp Cavender's Greek seasoning, ~1tsp cracked black pepper, 1Tbsp A1 then combine with beef and let set 10minutes for the liquid to be absorbed. Divide beef into 4 even portions and form into patties 5-6" diameter.
Seed and dice two Jalapeno peppers. These were the very first ones picked this year - good flavor but low heat. Sprinkle the peppers on two patties.
Add ~2Tbsp crumbled cheese to each of the two patties. I put Gorgonzola on one; Feta with ~1tsp smashed capers on the second. Cover with the remaining two patties; gently press together; use vertical pressing motion with fingertips to seal the perimiter of the two big honking half pound burgers. Grill to medium well or whatever you prefer.
The Gorgonzola burger was delicious. It just worked better with the fresh pepper and seasonings I used in the beef.
The Feta was OK, but needed something more, like maybe some Oregano leaves from the bush in the next raised bed in my garden?
Thanks much for your tips and your time in reading this. And, yes soon I will have a bacon cheddar cheeseburger with lettuce and tomato, Heinz 57 and french fried potatoes, big kosher pickle and a cold draft beer. Good Gosh Almighty!
Happy Summer Burgers on the Grill to you all!