Spanish Hamburger

Spanish Hambuger
Oh my… this is the best hamburger ever!

A hamburger with a Spanish twist? Why not! We decided to design a tasty burger which combines elements from Spanish cuisine. The main thing is using fresh ingredients. We bought a chuck cut which is cheap and contains enough fat for the burger. After grinding we added a taste of Spain in form of olives, capers and smoked paprika.

A while ago we found a very nice recipe for hamburger buns from a Finnish blog. The problem with homemade buns usually is that they cannot hold the weight or the moisture of the contents and they break easily. While this recipe takes 4 hours to make, it’s definitely worth it, because the structure is exactly right for hamburger. The buns become soft from the surface and they still hold the contents without breaking.

To fine tune Spanish taste a proper ketchup and mayonnaise would be in order, too. We made our own ketchup from scratch, but took a shortcut with mayo. Mayo is not hard to make, but it goes stale quickly. Homemade mayonnaise in restaurants was banned in Andalucia a few years ago. As a result cases of food poisoning  dropped dramatically!

Last, but not least, we fried some onions and green paprika in honey and soy sauce. Green paprika brings nice color while caramelized onions offer a great flavor!

Ingredients for Hamburger Buns for 4 Servings

  • 1 dl (1/2 cups) water  (42 °C, 108 ºF) – agua
  • 2 tablespoons of milk – leche
  • 1 teaspoon of yeast – levadura
  • 1 tablespoon of sugar – azucar
  • 2 eggs – huevos
  • 4 dl (2 cups) wheat flour – harina de trigo
  • 1 teaspoon of salt – sal
  • 1,5 tablespoons of soft butter – mantequilla
  •  sesame seeds – semillas de sésamo

Combine warm water, milk, yeast and sugar. Let it rest for 5 minutes. Break 1 egg in a glass and whisk a little. Put flour in a bowl and stir the salt and soft butter in. Then add the water/milk mixture and the whisked egg to the flours and knead to dough.

Transfer the dough to a lightly floured surface and knead for about 8-10 minutes until the dough becomes smooth and elastic. The dough will be sticky, so you may need to add a little flour kneading easier.

Rise for 2 hours. Time seems long, but it is worth it.

Roll the flattened balls and rise under a towel for another 2 hours.

After 4 hours of waiting time you can finally brush the buns with egg and add sesame seeds. Bake them at 200 °C (400 ºF) for 10-15 minutes. Let the buns rest for at least 10 minutes before slicing them in half.

Ingredients for Homemade Spanish Ketchup

  • 8 cloves of garlic – dientes de ajo
  • 8 tomatos – tomates
  • olive oil – aceite de oliva
  • salt – sal
  • ground black pepper – pimienta negra
  • Jerez vinegar – vinagre de Jerez
  • 1 chili – pimiento picante
  • Spanish smoked paprika, spicy – pimentón picante
  • honey – miel
  • 1 dl (0.5 cups) tomato paste – tomate doble consentrado

Soften minced garlic and chili in olive oil in a saucepan. Slice tomatoes in 4 slices and add them to the saucepan, too. Let the tomatoes soften a bit so that juice extracts. Stir the mixture every once in awhile. When tomatoes are soft and juices are boiling, add a little bit honey to cut the bitterness of tomatoes, a pinch of salt, pepper and smoked paprika and a slash of vinegar to taste. Too not over season, because the ketchup is reduced by half. Add tomato paste, which brings flavor and turn color from yellowish to more red. Let the mixture simmer for about 1-1,5 hours until the structure is right. Add salt, pepper, smoked paprika, honey and vinegar, if needed. Stir well and let it cool before serving.

Ingredients for Spanish Mayonnaise

  • 2 dl (0.5 cups) jar of mayonnaise
  • 2 cloves of garlic – dientes de ajo
  • 1 teaspoon of Spanish smoked paprika, spicy – pimentón picante

Mince the garlic and mix well with mayonnaise and smoked paprika. Voilá, you are done! Let the mixture rest in the fridge for at least an hour.

Ingredients for Spanish Hamburgers for 4 Servings

  • 500 g (20 oz) ground chuck – carne de vacuno picada
  • 1 dl (0.5 cups) of green olives with stones removed – olivas verdes
  • 0,5 dl (0,25 cups) of capers – alcaparras
  • 2 teaspoons of Spanish smoked paprika, spicy – pimentón picante
  • pinch of salt and ground black pepper – sal y pimienta negra

Mince olives and capers and mix well with ground chuck, smoked paprika, salt and ground black pepper. Shape the hamburgers and grill them about 2 minutes per side, if you want them medium.

Cut the buns in half and coat top side with the mayo and bottom side with the ketchup. Put onion/paprika mix on the bottom, place the hamburger on top of  that and finish with cheese of your choice. We used brie which works very well with this hamburger.

¡Buen provecho!

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