spinach beef burgers
You can’t have a BBQ without serving hamburgers. A great way to dress up a hamburger is by adding sautéed vegetables into the mix, or even make a great sauce or condiment to layer the burger with. In this version, I added some sautéed spinach and fennel for a savory and moist combination that always receives compliments.
Yield: 14-15 large burgers
Rating: A little involved, so let’s rate this medium
1 bunch fresh spinach (not baby spinach)
½ Spanish onion, chopped small
½ fennel, chopped small
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 pounds of ground chopped meat
1 whole egg
¾ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
2 clove fresh garlic, chopped
1/3 cup duck sauce
Take a large sauté pan and heat up 2 tablespoons of your olive oil under medium-high heat. When the oil is hot (you will see ripples running through it) add your onion and fennel with ¼ teaspoon of the kosher salt. Allow the onion and fennel to cook for 5 minutes, and then add your spinach and 1 clove of the chopped garlic and cook for an additional 5 minutes. (All the spinach should be wilted.) Allow the mixture to cool completely.
In a separate mixing bowl combine the beef, egg, remaining 1/2 teaspoon of salt, pepper and garlic. When it is fully combined, add your spinach mixture and mix it in thoroughly. Form hamburger patties (sliders or regular sized) and place aside into a tray (in the fridge) until you are ready for grilling. Alternatively your can wrap them individually in plastic wrap and store in a zippered bag in the freezer.
When you are ready to grill, preheat your BBQ to high for 15 minutes. Clean your grill grates well with a metal BBQ brush. Lower your grill to medium-high and cook your burgers for 8 minutes per side. After you flip your burger at the first 8 minute mark, take your duck sauce and a basting brush and brush each burger generously with the duck sauce.
Note: A good grilling trick to learn is not to force your meat when you want to flip it. If it is sticking to the grill it is probably because it is not ready to be flipped. Your meat will release from the grill when it is ready to turn. If you go to flip it and it is stuck to the grates - instead of forcing it wait 30 seconds and then try to flip it again.
You can form and freeze your burgers and store up to 2 months in the freezer. Alternatively, if you are preparing it fresh, it needs to be mixed and formed the day of serving. After the vegetables are mixed into the meat, it only lasts 1 day in the fridge. As a general rule, I don't keep chopped meat in the fridge longer than 1 day as it begins to turn brown.