The Greeklish Burger
Houston Yacht Club, La Porte, TX
This beef–mushroom burger, a winner of our 2017 Blended Burger Project, is topped with a Thai basil aïoli, feta, and a refreshing Greek salad–inspired topping.
- 1 pound 5 ounces ground chuck
- 13 ounces cremini mushrooms, finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons capers, chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- Montreal steak seasoning to taste
- 18 Thai basil leaves, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, pressed
- Salt to taste
- 1/4 cup mayonnaise
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon water
- Pepper to taste
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 3/4 teaspoon paprika
Greek Salad Topping:
- 5 to 8 whole cherry tomatoes, sliced
- 2 tablespoons pickled red onion, sliced
- 1 Persian cucumber, sliced
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 4 ounces feta, crumbled
- 4 brioche buns
Make the patties: in a large bowl, working with really cold ingredients, mix together the ground chuck, mushrooms, capers, salt, and pepper with your hands until the meat begins to emulsify and become smooth like a paste. If the meat gets too warm, place in the freezer for a few minutes until it stiffens up again. Form into four 8-ounce patties and keep in the refrigerator until ready to cook.
Make the basil aïoli: mash the basil, garlic, and 1/4 teaspoon salt in a small bowl until a paste forms. Whisk in the mayonnaise, olive oil, and lemon juice. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Make the paprika oil: in a small pot, heat the oil and paprika over low heat until the oil becomes deeply reddened, taking care not to burn or scorch it, stirring occasionally, 20 to 30 minutes. Strain through a cheesecloth and reserve.
Make the Greek salad: in a bowl, vigorously toss together the ingredients until a slick forms. Keep in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
Cook the burgers: liberally season each patty with the Montreal seasoning. Heat a lightly greased large cast-iron skillet over high heat until it’s about to smoke. Cook the burgers on one side for about 4 minutes, or until well seared. Reduce the temperature to medium and flip the burgers to sear on the other side for another 4 minutes, or until the burgers are cooked to medium. Top each patty with 2 scant tablespoons feta and cover until the cheese has melted, about 1 minute.
Meanwhile, toast or grill the buns for 5 minutes, until golden at the edges.
Liberally apply the basil aïoli to both sides of the buns. Place the grilled burger with the melted feta on the bottom bun and add a handful of the Greek salad topping on top of the patty. Drizzle with the paprika oil and lay top bun down. Use a toothpick to secure and enjoy.