Change up your dinner game with renowned food writer and test kitchen master Melissa Clark. With recipes across the playing field, from a simple egg-based supper to an elaborate (but not difficult) roast, there’s something in the mix for everyone. Churn out stellar salads, hearty pastas, freshly baked bread and more with this versatile new volume. These chorizo pork burgers are a far cry from your average ground chuck.
Combining fresh chorizo sausage (squeezed out of its casings) with plain ground pork makes for a spicy, brawny burger. You can serve these plain, but I like to caramelize sliced onions on the grill and pile them on top. Their sweet-and-sour notes go really nicely with the pork. And a few slices of Manchego cheese add a pleasing salty creaminess that keeps with the Spanish theme here, though any sheep’s-milk cheese will work.
One thing to note: Because the burgers are made from raw pork, don’t serve them rare; the fat content of the sausage and pork will ensure that your burger will stay nice and juicy even when cooked to medium. And be sure not to use cured chorizo, the salami-like kind you can slice and eat without cooking. The leathery texture won’t work in a burger unless you pass it through a meat grinder.
If you can’t find fresh chorizo, you can substitute spicy Italian sausages. Just increase the smoked paprika by one teaspoon. You can form the burger patties the day before grilling; wrap them well and keep them in the fridge until you’re ready to light the grill.
- 1 pound ground pork
- 1 pound fresh (uncured) chorizo, squeezed out of its casings
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more as needed
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika (hot or sweet) to taste
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 garlic clove, grated on a Microplane or minced
- 1 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar
- 2 teaspoons honey
- 1 large Spanish onion, sliced
- 6 ounces Manchego cheese, thinly sliced
- Hamburger buns, for serving
- Mayonnaise, mustard and/or ketchup, for serving (optional)
- sliced pickles, for serving (optional)
For the burgers
Heat a grill or broiler to high.
In a large bowl, combine the pork, chorizo, salt, paprika, cumin, and garlic, mixing just to combine. Form into 6 to 8 patties, taking care to keep the mixture loose and not pack it tightly (which makes for a tough burger, as does overmixing; always use a light touch with ground meat).
In a small bowl, mix together the olive oil, sherry vinegar, and honey. Brush this over both sides of the onion slices and sprinkle them with salt. Grill or broil the onions until they are golden brown on both sides, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer the onions to a plate.
Grill or broil the burgers on both sides until they are cooked to medium. Since this is raw pork, the meat should be cooked until pink on the inside but not red rare (140°F will give you medium to medium-rare meat). This can take anywhere from 3 to 6 minutes per side, depending on how thick you formed your patties and how hot your fire is, so watch them carefully.
When the burgers are almost cooked through, top them with the cheese and let the cheese melt while the patties finish cooking. You can also toast the buns at this point if you like.
Serve the burgers in the buns, spread with your condiments of choice and the onions and pickles, if using, on top.