Continuing my lackadaisical Football Foodie off-season, a quick post about one of my favorite “NEED MEAT NOW, IRON LEVELS FALLING” meals; pineapple, cole slaw, teriyaki and blue cheese on an English muffin burger. The sweetness of the pineapple and the teriyaki, the bite of the blue cheese and the crunch of the cole slaw all hold up nicely to beef while the English muffin grabs every last drop of succulent juices from the meat, fruit and slaw.
The trick to this burger is using a light hand with the blue cheese (a spreadable, creamy blue cheese is preferable here), teriyaki and cole slaw. You don’t want to overpower the meat, nor do you want these three ingredients fighting each other for prominence on the palate.
As I’ve said many times before, I’m a big fan of the Nancy Silverton mix at Huntington Meats — a coarse grind of prime chuck with additional prime sirloin fat blended in for a burger of about 20-28% of buttery fat, perfect for serving rare to medium rare. (At $3.99 a pound, it’s also one of the cheapest prime meats around.) Hunt for similar blends or ask your butcher for advice on which meats they’ve just ground up that day.
Look for fresh, ripe pineapple if possible to avoid the metallic taste of canned fruit. Another benefit to using fresh over canned pineapple on your burger? All the juice that is released from a pineapple when coring is easily saved for breakfast the next morning or better yet, mixed with some dark rum for a special “chef’s drink” while you’re making dinner.
Lightly toast the English muffins, spread a small amount of blue cheese on one half of each muffin and set aside.
Form the patties into thick quarter-pound rounds and generously season both sides of the patty with fresh ground pepper and kosher salt. Heat a cast iron skillet to medium-high and cook burgers to desired temperature, lightly basting each burger in a small amount of teriyaki sauce after flipping. (Only flip your burgers once, no matter how rare or well-done you want them!)
Set the burgers on a small plate to rest, lower the heat in the pan to medium-low and quickly grill the pineapple slices with a small amount of teriyaki sauce until caramelized, about a minute or so on each side.
Stack the grilled pineapple on the blue cheese half of the muffin to create the bottom of the burger, slide on the patty, top with a forkful of cole slaw and then the other half of the English muffin.
Serve with a light pasta salad or potato salad. Don’t even think about bothering with fries, they’ll get cold by the time you get to them you’ll be so focused on your burger.
At least something good happened around here this evening. Three fluke goals against the Pens? I demand Shero himself get some sage and smudge that end of the ice.