Summer of the Burger | Week 1

Summer is knocking on my door and I am ready to let her in! For me, if all things go as planned, I am kicking off summer (and the extra-long weekend) at approx. 12:35 p.m. today when I slather on some sunscreen and do a cannonball into the pool! Adding to the excitement is my declaration of 2010 as being the Summer of the Burger. We grill just about every day during the soon-to-be hot months, with hamburgers making a regular appearance on our menu. Determined not to have the same old burger week after week, I have vowed to try one new burger recipe each week this summer. I know...it's hard to contain your excitement.

The only way to kick off the Summer of the Burger is with a recipe from Bobby Flay. Bobby loves burgers. I love Bobby. It's a match made in burger heaven. First up, Bobby's Santa Fe Burger. 

Santa Fe Burgers
From: Bobby Flay

1 large poblano chile
2 1/2 tablespoons canola oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 pounds ground chuck (80 percent lean) or ground turkey (90 percent lean)
4 hamburger buns, split; toasted, if desired (see below)
12 blue or yellow corn tortilla chips

Queso Sauce
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups whole milk
8 ounces Monterey Jack cheese, coarsely grated (about 2 cups)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

(We did this on the grill...same basic directions as below).

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Put the chile on a rimmed baking sheet, rub with 1 tablespoon of the oil, and season with salt and pepper. Roast in the oven until the skin of the chile is blackened, about 15 minutes. Remove the chile from the oven, place in a bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let the chile steam for 15 minutes. Peel, stem, and seed the chile and then coarsely chop it.

To make the queso sauce, melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Whisk in the flour and cook for 1 minute. Add the milk, increase the heat to high, and cook, whisking constantly, until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and whisk in the cheese until melted; season with salt and pepper. Keep warm.*Note* Our sauce turned out more runny than we liked and the Monterey Jack flavor was diluted with the milk. I think next time around, I will skip the sauce and just melt the cheese on top.

Divide the meat into 4 equal portions (about 6 ounces each). Form each portion loosely into a 3/4-inch-thick burger and make a deep depression in the center with your thumb. Season both sides of each burger with salt and pepper. Cook the burgers, using the remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons oil. See how Bobby cooks perfect burgers

Place the burgers on the bun bottoms and top each with a few tablespoons of queso sauce, chips, and some of the poblano. Cover with the bun tops and serve immediately.

Want to see step-by-step instructions? Click here to watch Bobby grill it!

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