The holidays always seem like a good time to go all out. Attempting to do just that, this is a go big or go home kind of burger.
In an effort to celebrate the season, I did all I could to infuse as much holiday flavor as possible. Those touches reach everything from the seasoning for the meat to the toppings I piled on top.
Another name for it could be Grass-fed Bacon Burgers with Sautéed Brussels Sprouts, Pickled Onions and Cranberries, and Garlic Parmesan Black Pepper Mayonnaise. See. It’s a little long.
I think Ultimate Holiday Burger suits it pretty well.
It all came about because the Butcher Box loaded me up with another shipment of excellent meats. Since the last time I braised some of their boneless short ribs, they have expanded their monthly subscription boxes to include pastured chicken and heritage breed pork, in addition to their grass-fed beef. If you know someone who needs to step up their high-quality protein game, Butcher Box makes an excellent gift, by the way.
I received a generous beef and pork box, and since I made a slow cooked, comfort-food dish last time, I set out to make a crowd favorite turned holiday meal this time around.
You can cook your burgers any way you like – skillet, grill, etc. I stayed in the kitchen for this recipe and cooked them in the skillet.
Next, pick out the best kind of buns at your local bakery. Then you’ll slather on some of the garlic-parmesan-black pepper mayonnaise. Once the patty is set just right, a piece or two of the heritage breed pork bacon adds a nice touch. Then it’s piled high with sautéed shredded Brussels sprouts.
Wedged between the burger and sprouts is my favorite topping that adds the tangy kick I always look for in a burger. Quick pickled red onions and cranberries. I used frozen berries that I ran under hot water to thaw for this, but fresh cranberries would be even better.
Once the burger is loaded up, you have a little red, a little green, and a lot of delicious grass-fed beef that brings all the flavors together.
The Ultimate Holiday Burger
Makes 3 burgers
Note: Make the pickled red onions and cranberries at least 8 hours before preparing the burgers so that they can rest in the fridge and soak up plenty of flavor.
What you’ll need:
Quick Pickled Red Onions and Cranberries
1 cup thinly sliced red onion
1/4 cup halved cranberries
1/2 teaspoon whole cloves
1 cup water
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt
Garlic Parmesan Black Pepper Mayonnaise
1/3 cup prepared mayonnaise (I prefer olive oil mayonnaise)
1 clove garlic, grated
1 tablespoon freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 lb. ground grass-fed beef
1 clove garlic, grated
1/4 teaspoon minced rosemary leaves
1/4 teaspoon minced thyme leaves
3/4 teaspoon fine ground sea salt
1/4 + 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 1/2 cups shredded Brussels sprouts
Pinch of poultry seasoning
3 sliced heritage breed pork bacon, cooked
3 burger buns
How to make it:
To make the onions, place the sliced onions, halved cranberries, and cloves in a pint mason jar. Bring the water, vinegar, sugar, and salt to a simmer in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Pour the hot liquid into the jar, seal with a lid, and refrigerate for at least 8 hours before serving.
Stir together the mayonnaise, garlic, parmesan cheese, and black pepper in a small dish. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
Knead together the grass-fed beef, garlic, rosemary, and thyme in a medium bowl. Form the meat into 3 patties. Preheat a large skillet over medium-high. Place the burgers in the skillet and sprinkle evenly with a 1/2 teaspoon of salt and 1/4 teaspoon of pepper. Cook to your desired doneness.
While the burgers cook, heat the olive oil in a small skillet over medium-high heat. Add the Brussels sprouts and cook for 30 to 60 seconds, just until bright green. Stir in the poultry seasoning, 1/4 teaspoon of sea salt, and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper.
To build the burgers, spread the bottom of each bun with mayo, add the burger, and then a slice of bacon (cut in half). Top with pickled onions and cranberries. Finally add the Brussels sprouts and the top of the bun.