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Gourmet Fast Food Episode 2: Bajd u Bacon Cheeseburger 🍔

Another week, another burger! And this time, the Gourmet FoodBlog way!

Gourmet Fast Food Episode 2: Bajd u Bacon Cheeseburger 🍔

It’s time for FoodBlog Network’s Gourmet Fast Food Episode 2. This week we’ll be taking you right to the source of great comfort food, the mecca for fast food, the ultimate taste bud pleaser: the cheeseburger! But not just any cheeseburger, our Maltese Twist right here is what will take this simple, everyday bite to its bangin’ bomb level. 

We’re talking about the classic Maltese sando - turned cheeseburger! Bajd u Bacon, hi! And with Chef Stephen La Rosa’s expert touch, you know these beastly buns will take on the most gourmet of flavour profiles. He pairs the Bajd u Bacon Burger with Caramelized Onions and Pickles to take it up a notch and amp up the flavour!


Do you like pickles on your burger?


So let’s cut down on the talk and go straight to the good stuff! Here’s the recipe that Chef Stephen cooked up in the stylish Veneta Cucine Essence Lounge Model Kitchen, in the stunning Fino showroom.



Recipe

Ingredients

Serves 4

Caramelised onions

  • 500g white onion
  • salt, to taste*
  • balsamic vinegar, to taste
  • 4 sprigs thyme
  • Small knob of butter

Burger sauce:

  • 100g mayonnaise
  • 50g ketchup
  • 40g chopped pickle
  • salt + pickle juice, to taste

Patty:

  • 300g beef mince 
  • 300g pork mince 

Seasoned with:

  • Coriander seed, ground*
  • Black pepper, ground*
  • Garlic powder*

Blue ribbon pickled cucumbers:

  • 375g water
  • 225g vinegar
  • 90g sugar*
  • 40g salt*
  • 105g dill
  • 2 cloves sliced garlic
  • 3g mustard seed*
  • 3g black pepper*
  • 0.5g allspice berries*
  • 0.5g coriander seed*
  • 0.75g chili*
  • 6 small cucumbers

To Finish:

  • 4 brioche buns**
  • 4 eggs 
  • 8 slices bacon 
  • 8 slices American cheese 

* all sealed dried ingredients are sponsored Lamb Brand products, each redeemable on the Cook & Exchange Gift Scheme

** this week’s brioche buns were kindly sponsored by Vesuvio Bakery, perfectly soft, fresh and undoubtedly tasty.

Equipment

  • Large saute pan***
  • Small non-stick pan***
  • Medium-sized pot***
  • Large jar
  • Rubber spatula
  • Fish spatula
  • Baking tray
  • Small mixing bowls
  • Chopping board
  • Knife

*** these select pieces of equipment were kindly sponsored by Crosscraft for Episode 2 of Gourmet Fast Food


Burger, Bajd u Bacon by Chef Stephen La Rosa at Fino Kitchen

This is where you're heading... we promise it's gonna be great!


Method

For the condiments:

  1. Cut onions, place into a frying pan over medium heat with 2tbsp olive oil, add salt to taste and a few sprigs of thyme. Cook your onions for about 20 minutes, or until golden brown; this should take about 20 minutes.
  2. When nicely browned add a small drizzle of balsamic or sherry vinegar and a small knob of butter to your onions. Season to taste and set aside while you work on your pickles.
  3. Combine vinegar, water, salt and sugar in a small pot and bring up to the boil. Place cucumbers into a large jar together with all of the pickling spices. Once the liquid is boiling, pour it over the cucumbers. Allow to sit overnight for best flavour or for a couple of hours if you’re in super hungry mode. 
  4. To make a bomb burger sauce, you will need to combine ketchup, mayo, chopped pickles and lightly season with pickle juice to taste. You can use your freshly made pickles and juice if you allow them to work their magic long enough, or use store-bought instead. 

Condiments from Lamb Brand used to make the Bajd u Bacon Burger.

These are all the ingredient needed to create the perfect Bajd u Bacon Cheeseburger!


For the burger patties:

  1. Combine freshly ground black pepper with ground coriander and garlic powder to make a bold and well-rounded spice mix. 
  2. Combine your pork and beef mince with a generous pinch of the spice mix - aka your flavour bomb. Shape into burgers and allow to rest on a non-stick surface.

Burger patties for Chef Stephen La Rosa's Bajd u Bacon buger.

Pork & Beef - the perfect balance of rich, & fatty flavours, for the perfectly juicy burger!


For the bacon & bun:

  1. It’s time to cook down your bacon, so get ready for an aroma like no other. In a non-stick pan over low heat, cook down your rashers until nicely browned, remove and drain oil on a paper towel. 
  2. Cut your buns in half and toast those flavour sponges in some bacon fat to amp up the porkiness!

Buns from Vesuvio Baker used in Gourmet Fast Food Episode 2

Nice buns Chef Stephen. Nice buns!


Final steps:

This is where all the fun kicks off! Season your burger patties well with salt and cook over high heat until nicely browned. Roughly 2 minutes on each side should do the trick. Remove the burger from the pan and place onto a tray.

When it comes to assembly time, top the burger with sliced pickles, the caramelised onions and sliced cheese and stick this stack in the oven until just cooked through to your liking. 

While the burger is doing its time in the oven, place an egg into your frying pan and cook over medium heat for the perfect sunny side up, or flip it over if you prefer your golden crown cooked over easy. 

Take your patty-onion-pickle-cheese stack out of the oven, crown it with them crispy bacon rashers and that perfect egg. Slap some sauce on your buns and stack your burger. Just. Like. This. Bun, Towered Stack, Bun. Repeat! 

No seriously, repeat, this recipe makes 4, so get cracking!

And this, fellow burger enthusiasts, is what Chef Stephen La Rosa calls a proper gourmet burger - fast food at its finest, with that little FoodBlog flair. All you’ve got to do now is grab yourself a Green Hop IPA from none other than Farsons Classic Brews, pop something binge-worthy on the telly, and chow down, caveman style!


Bajd u Bacon burger by Chef Stephen La Rosa for FoodBlog Network's Gourmet Fast Food shot at Fino kitchen.

If this doesn't make you happy, we don't know what will!


How do you smash your burger?


Farsons Classic Brew IPA

Paired perfectly with a Farsons Classic Brew IPA


If you missed Episode 1, catch it now! Chef Stephen prepares his go-to Pub classic, Fish & Chips! Don’t forget to check out FoodBlog’s Instagram or Facebook page next week, where we’ll be dropping a few hints on what to expect from Episode 3 of Gourmet Fast Food: A Maltese Twist. We’ll drop you a bone right here, right now though… it’s a post-drink night go-to that you can smother is sweet or spicy sauce. But we’ll wrap it up here for now!

What do you think Chef Stephen will cook up next? Drop a message in the comments below?


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