Burgers with a touch of the tropics. With a Southeast Asian flair too. The grilled pork and beef patties are served with lemon and pineapple sauce, and topped with finely sliced shallots, finger chilies and crushed pineapples. Very refreshing. The interplay of colors makes the rather tired and boring burgers so eye-pleasing too.
You can make the patties with any kind of meat, or even vegetables if you’re not into meat (see tips for making firm and juicy burgers). I used a half-pork and half-beef mixture with salt, pepper, panko (Japanese bread crumbs), rosemary and garlic. I’ll leave it to you to choose your own seasonings and spices.
- 1 kilogram meat seasoned and spiced, and formed into 8 to 10 patties
- 2 cans (8 oz. each) of crushed pineapple, drained (save the syrup)
- 1/2 teaspoon grated ginger
- zest of 2 lemons (or lime)
- juice of 2 lemons (or lime)
- 1/4 to 1/2 cup sugar (depending on your taste)
- 2 generous pinches of rock salt
- 1 tablespoon tapioca or corn starch dispersed in 2 tablespoons of water
- a few drops of yellow food color (optional)
- 3 to 4 shallots thinly sliced
- 2 to 3 finger chilies thinly sliced
- a small handful of finely sliced onion leaves
Grill the meat patties (see how I grill my burgers).
While the burgers grill, make the sauce.
Pour the pineapple syrup and lemon juice into a pan. Add the ginger, salt and sugar. Heat until the sugar dissolves.
Pour in the starch solution and food color, if using. Cook, stirring, until the mixture is thickened and clear.
To serve, arrange two burgers on a plate. Place a tablespoonful or two of crushed pineapple on top. Add shallots and chilies. Drizzle some of the sauce over and around the burgers. Sprinkle with onion leaves and serve.