The Green Chile Burger, southwestern food, southwest burger, chile peppers
The Morning After: Huevos Rancheros

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A few years ago, I attended a conference in Albuquerque. It marked the first time I'd ever been to New Mexico or Arizona but I had always been a fan of Southwest-inspired food. Well, the one thing I noticed that was ubiquitous with the Southwest was green chile -- not the chili you eat in the winter, but the chile pepper. There are, of course, several different types, but typically the one that is symbolic and representative of "green chile" and its affiliated recipes is the poblano pepper. So in the spirit of grilling season, I decided to present a recipe that you guys could surely appreciate -- a green chile burger.

1 pound (or more) of ground beef, preferably 80/20 or ground chuck

Kosher salt

2 large poblano peppers

Olive oil or vegetable oil spray

1 cup shredded cheese blend (I used 1/2 fontina and 1/2 extra sharp cheddar)

1/4 cup mayonnaise

1/4 cup ketchup

1 Tbsp. chopped cilantro

4 large Kaiser rolls or hamburger buns


Preheat grill to medium-high. Make the "secret sauce" -- combine mayo, ketchup and cilantro, and set aside. Divide beef into four equal portions and shape into patties according to how thick you'd like your burger. Make an indentation in the center with your thumb to avoid the burgers puffing up. Sprinkle with salt. Spray poblano peppers with cooking spray. Cook peppers on grill until slightly charred but not too burnt. Cook the burgers for 3-4 minutes per side or until desired doneness. When burgers are almost done, sprinkle with cheese, and cook for another 30-45 seconds or until cheese melts. Keep burgers under a foil tent while you prepare the peppers. Carefully peel the skin off the peppers, and then slice peppers into large, flat slices, and discard stems and seeds. To assemble, spread sauce on each bun half, place burger on bottom half, and top with roasted peppers. Now eat that thing like you mean it! Serves 4 (or 2 hungry dudes, or 1 extremely hungry and gluttonous dude).

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