Friday, August 17, 2012

Anchor Steam Burgers!

Good morning!  So I think that I had told you this before….Mr. Rooster’s birthday was August 8th.  He had work that day, I had cheer practice (well, Addy did anyway), and we just didn’t get it together to have a good birthday dinner for him.  I made up for that a few nights ago.  I made him Anchor Steam Burgers.  Chris loves a good cheeseburger, and he loved it even more since it was infused with his favorite beer.  The beer makes the beef super moist.  So moist that I don’t even add anything else to the burgers but salt and pepper.

A couple of months ago, I worked at a food show with some friends of mine who are food brokers.  One of the products that they represent is a Guinness Brat.  It is just as it sounds…..a delicious sausagy bratwurst infused with Guinness beer.  They are crazy good.  I don’t even really care for Guinness, but they were still crazy good.  I wanted to replicate the beer flavor in a hamburger, but I definitely didn’t want said beer to be Guinness…..so I used Anchor Steam, which is Chris’s favorite.  The results were amazing.  Let me show you how I made these little pieces of heaven.

For the burgers (and don’t worry….these get a yummy topping too), I used an Anchor Steam and two types of ground beef.  I used a pound of super lean burger so I won’t be such a fatty, and a pound of a slightly fattier beef for flavor.  Moderation people.

The first step is to reduce the Anchor Steam by half.  And FYI, you can use any beer you want for this….within reason.  Some good beers to use are Anchor Steam, Sierra Nevada Pale Ale or any other Sierra Nevada Beer, Guinness, Sam Adams Boston Lager, or an IPA.  So beers not to use are:

-Coors Light

-Keystone, any variety


-Natural Light

You get the picture.  Basically any beer that I would actually drink (Keystone Ice, baby!) won’t work for this recipe.  I think I am the only Chico State student ever that would be pissed when I walked into a party and they had a keg of Sierra Nevada.  Darker beers are no bueno to drink;)

I boiled the beer for about 10 minutes.  It reduced by half during this time.  It gets thicker and slightly syrupy.

Horrible picture, but you can see that the beer is closer to 6 ounces now than 12 ounces.

I poured 3 ounces of the reduced beer over the beef and let it sit for about 10 minutes.  Believe it or not, the beef will absorb every last drop of the beer.  This gives the beef an amazing flavor.  Beer really goes well with beef.

While my beef soaked, I got started on my onions…..which are the part of the delicious topping.  I sliced a whole onion in half, and then I sliced those up.

I sautéed the onions over low heat for about 45 minutes.  I know, I know….this takes some time.  Probably not the ideal thing to do when you get home from work on a busy weeknight.  But, you can make the onion topping ahead of time and keep it in the fridge until you are ready to make your burgers.  I guess that requires recuing your beer ahead of time too.  I think you can make it work.  I have faith in you and your beer reducing abilities.

I will also be adding Dijon mustard, thyme and the remaining reduced beer to these onions.

Once my onions had cooked for about 45 minutes, and they were soft and sweet, I added the mustard.  I also added the thyme.

Finally, I stirred in the reduced beer.  Be ready for one of the best smells ever.  Your whole house will smell amazing.

I let this reduce for just a couple of minutes.  It will thicken pretty quickly.

Now your onions are done.  You can pop them in the fridge and reheat them later if need be.

Back to the burgers, I formed my patties and fried ‘em up.  You can grill yours if you want.  It was raining at my house so I didn’t go outside.  I always seem to find some excuse to not BBQ;)

That white stuff is cheese;)

Remember to form your patties slightly bigger than your buns.  They will shrink when cooking.  Also, make a dent in the middle with your thumb as burgers tend to puff up in the middle and you will end up with a weird hacky sack burger if you don’t make a dent.

These cooked about 3 minutes per side.  I like my burgers rare.  If you don’t like them bloody, cook them longer.  Duh.

I toasted my buns and added mayo to one side.  Mayo is up to you.  It is a personal preference, I guess.

Holy crap.  This was one of the best burgers I have ever had. The beer makes it.  You can taste it in the meat and of course, in the onion topping. 

I am pretty sure this was the juiciest burger I have even had.

I topped my burgers with gruyere cheese, which is a nutty Swiss cheese.  Cheddar would work too.

I wanted to take another picture, but this was what Chris left me with after about 1 minute.  Needless to say, he loved it.  This will be my only burger recipe from now on.

I hope you try this.  Let me know what beer you used!

Anchor Steam Burgers

2 pounds ground beef, 80/20 and 93/7 mixed

12 ounces Anchor Steam beer

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon black pepper

Oil for frying

Gruyere cheese for topping

Buns, condiments of choice

Pour beer into a sauce pan.  Boil for 10 minutes or until beer is reduced by half.

Pour 3 ounces of reduced beer over ground beef.  Set remaining beer aside.  Let beef sit for 10 minutes. 

Sprinkle beef with salt and pepper and mix.  Form patties and fry burgers in a little bit of oil for about 3 minutes per side, over medium heat.

Top with cheese for last minute or cooking.  Serve on buns with onion topping and condiments of choice.

Makes 6 burgers

Anchor Steam Onion Topping

One large onion, sliced

1 tablespoon butter

2 teaspoons oil

3 ounces reduced Anchor Steam beer, leftover from burger recipe

1 heaping tablespoon Dijon mustard

2 teaspoons fresh thyme

Salt and pepper to taste

Melt butter in oil in a large sauté pan.  Add onions and sauté over low heat for 45 minutes.  Onions will be very soft.

Stir in mustard, thyme and reduced beer.  Cook until reduced and thickened, about 2 more minutes. 

Serve on burgers.

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