It’s the perfect time for gourmet burgers

Whether you love meat or you don’t, there’s always a great time for some burgers.

Now gourmet burgers have, over the years, become a favourite for many of us. Call it the smash burger effect. Gourmet burgers are packed with flavour. We love layering our burgers with as much deliciousness as possible. We try out flavour combinations that ideally would’t work, but do.

A few years ago, people who follow a plant-based diet, have struggled to get the perfect vegan and vegetarian burger patties. But not so any more. Chefs and cooks have come up with great ideas for plant-based burgers and their innovations are getting better every year.

But there are still many people who love their meat and the juicier the patty, the better.

So four gourmet burger recipes that will be great for you to try out this weekend. From the beetroot and lentil burger and the gourmet salmon burger, to the Asian style pork burger and cheese filled burger, these recipes will suit everyone’s diet.

Enjoy.

SALMON BURGERS WITH WASABI MAYO (Makes 4)

Gourmet burgers are packed with flavour.Picture: Chris Collingridge

400g skinless salmon or trout fillets, coarsely chopped

1 bunch of spring onions, roughly chopped

125ml dill

10ml grated fresh ginger

grated lemon rind and juice of 1 lemon

salt and pepper

250ml Panko breadcrumbs

125ml creamy mayonnaise

10ml-15ml wasabi

olive oil, for frying

wholewheat rolls, to serve

1 avocado, sliced

pickled ginger

Place the salmon, spring onion, dill, ginger, lemon rind and juice in the bowl of a food processor and pulse a few times until the mixture is combined but still chunky.

Transfer to a bowl.

Season with salt and pepper and mix in the breadcrumbs.

Divide into 4 equal portions and shape into patties.

Transfer to a plate, cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Combine mayo and wasabi and refrigerate until needed.

Heat some oil in a pan over high heat and fry the patties for 2 minutes a side.

Arrange on wholewheat rolls with avocado slices, wasabi mayonnaise and pickled ginger.

Vegan beetroot and lentil burger with coriander alioli (Serves 4)

Gourmet burgers are packed with flavour.

1 medium beetroot grated or finely diced

1 tin lentils, drained

1 tbs tomato paste

½ an onion, finely diced

2 cloves of garlic, minced

¾ cup ground flaxseed

1 tsp fresh thyme leaves

salt and freshly cracked black pepper

METHOD: Combine all ingredients and mix by hand until the lentils are squashed and the mixture comes together and becomes firm. Heat a pan and fry a little bit of the mix in some olive oil to check the seasoning. Adjust if necessary. Divide into your desired sized patties and work them with wet hands to get them to stay together nicely. Fry the patties in olive oil for about 3 minutes a side.

TO ASSEMBLE: Toast the burger bun and smear with the aioli. Layer with lettuce, tomato, red onion, gherkins, your patty, fried mushrooms and brinjal. Basically, go wild with whatever toppings and fillings you want. Home-made basil pesto works well too.

Serve with crispy onion rings, chips and your chosen sauce.

ASIAN-STYLE PORK BURGERS (Serves 4)

Gourmet burgers are packed with flavour. Picture: Chris Collingridge

600g pork mince

20ml grated fresh ginger

5ml chopped garlic

125ml chopped fresh coriander

45ml sweet chilli sauce

10ml sesame oil

250ml fresh breadcrumbs

salt and pepper

oil, for frying

sesame buns

lettuce and sweet chilli sauce, for serving

PICKLED SLAW

250ml white cabbage, shredded

250ml red cabbage, shredded

15ml salt

125ml rice vinegar

20ML-30ml castor sugar

5ml yellow mustard seeds

In a bowl, combine the mince, ginger, garlic, coriander, sweet chilli sauce, sesame oil, breadcrumbs, salt and pepper. Divide the mixture into four portions and shape into patties. Refrigerate for 30 minutes. Heat some oil in a frying pan and fry on a medium heat for 5 minutes a side. To ensure the burgers are fully cooked, place in a preheated oven at 180°C for 10minutes.

Serve on sesame buns with lettuce, pickled slaw and extra sweet chilli sauce or with potato wedges if desired.

SLAW: Combine the white and red cabbage in a bowl. Sprinkle the salt, and allow to stand for 20minutes.

Rinse well and allow to drain thoroughly.

Transfer to a bowl. Mix the rice vinegar, sugar and mustard seeds and stir until the sugar has dissolved. Pour over the cabbage, refrigerate and allow to marinate for 30minutes.

CHEESE-FILLED BEEF BURGERS (Makes 4 large or 8 medium)

Gourmet burgers are packed with flavour. Picture: Chris Collingridge

15ml olive oil

1 onion, finely chopped

5ml chopped garlic

1kg beef mince

10ml garlic salt

2ml black pepper

10ml smoked paprika

10ml dried oregano

a pinch of chilli flakes

30ml BBQ sauce

60ml Worcestershire sauce

250ml fresh breadcrumbs

oil, for frying

Hamburger buns, lettuce, sliced tomato, sliced onion and gherkins, for serving

CHEESE FILLING

250ml grated cheddar cheese

125ml grated Parmesan

125ml chopped fresh parsley

5 spring onions, finely chopped

Heat the oil in a frying pan and fry the onion and garlic until soft, about 5 minutes. Allow to cool slightly, then add to the mince with the garlic salt, pepper, smoked paprika, oregano, chilli flakes, BBQ sauce, Worcestershire sauce and breadcrumbs.

If making 4 large patties, divide the mince mixture into 8 balls, then shape into flat discs.

Place 4 discs on a board, fill with some cheese filling, cover with the remaining discs and shape into patties. Pinch the edges together to seal. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Heat some oil in a frying pan and fry the patties over medium-low heat for 6 to 7 minutes a side.

Serve on buns with lettuce, tomato, onion and gherkin. Serve with sweet potato chips if desired.

FILLING: Combine the ingredients.