Halloween Special: Zombie Burger


You should know by now that I dislike the idea of using food coloring in my recipes. So, using activated charcoal and squid ink to make a black burger even seems far fetch for me. After much research, I finally settle for a natural green colored burger bun. The problem with extracting color from natural ingredients is it will contradict the final taste. Instead of using matcha or pandan, I decided on using spinach; it does not contradict the final taste, rather, it somehow adds an earthy flavor to the burger as a whole. To be honest, I am quite flabbergast with the results.

I usually have a go-to BBQ sauce, but I needed a black sauce for this zombie theme burger. That's when I stumbled upon Chef Edward Lee's 22 ingredients BBQ sauce. I know for a fact that it will be flavor bomb just by reading the ingredients. You can check out his list here. I tweeted the recipe a bit tho; I used 2 types of onions and added lime zest. The sauce is very complex with depth and even leaves an umami aftertaste. It goes really well with the grilled chicken breast.

To cut thru all that richness, I used a very simple slaw consists of just red cabbages, carrots and green onion. The slaw also adds crunch and freshness to the burger. This is what I love about cooking and baking. I mean, you take raw natural ingredients and create a dish outta them. It is kinda fascinating. Anyway, I hope you will give this recipe a try. Happy Halloween!

Ingredients:

(Make 4 burgers)

  • Chef Edward Lee's BBQ Sauce:

  • Unsalted Butter, 2 TBSP

  • Olive Oil, 1 TSP

  • Yellow Onion Thinly Sliced, 1/2 lb

  • Red Onion Thinly Sliced, 1/2 lb

  • Garlic Finely Minced, 5 Cloves

  • Jalapeno Finely Sliced Deseeded, 2

  • Raisins, 1/3 Cup

  • Bourbon, 1/2 Cup

  • Freshly Brewed Coffee, 1/2 Cup

  • Cola, 1/2 Cup

  • Tomato Ketchup, 1/2 Cup

  • Soy Sauce, 1/4 Cup

  • Balsamic Vinegar, 1/4 Cup

  • Blackstrap Molasses, 2 TBSP

  • Worcestershire Sauce, 2 TBSP

  • Black Bean Paste, 2 TBSP

  • Mustard Powder, 1 TBSP

  • All Spice Powder, 2 TSP

  • Black Pepper, 2 TSP

  • Cayenne, 2 TSP

  • Smoked Paprika, 1 TSP

  • Fresh Lime Juice, 1

  • Fresh Lime Zest, 1

  • Sesame Oil, 1/4 Cup

  • Simple Slaw:

  • Red Cabbage Thinly Sliced, 1/4

  • Carrot Shredded, 1/2

  • Green Onion Thinly Chopped, A Handful

  • Japanese Kewpie Mayo, 2 TBSP

  • Sea Salt, Pinch

  • Black Pepper, Pinch

  • Chicken:

  • Skinless Boneless Chicken Breast, 500g

  • Cinnamon Powder, 1 TSP

  • Smoked Paprika, 1 TSP

  • Sea Salt, Pinch

  • White Pepper, Pinch

  • Burgers:

  • Homemade Steamed Bao, 4

  • Spinach, 40g

Equipment:

  • Griddle

  • Heavy Sauce Pot

  • Blender / Food Processor

Directions:

  1. Please visit my “How To Make Mantou / Bao / Turnover Bao” page for the fried mantou recipe.

  2. Prepare the BBQ sauce.

  3. In a sauce pot over medium heat, add in butter and oil.

  4. Once butter has melted, add in the onions.

  5. Season with pinch of salt and sugar.

  6. Saute to combine well.

  7. Cover and cook until the onions start to caramelize.

  8. Saute occasionally to prevent burning.

  9. Add in garlic, peppers and raisins.

  10. Saute to combine well.

  11. Once garlic starts to become aromatic, deglaze the pot with bourbon, coffee and cola.

  12. Stir to combine well.

  13. Cook until the mixture has reduced by half.

  14. Add in ketchup, soy sauce, balsamic, molasses, worcestershire and black bean paste.

  15. Turn the heat down to low.

  16. Allow the mixture cook to a slow simmer.

  17. Continue simmering for about 5 mins.

  18. Add in mustard, all spice, pepper, cayenne and paprika.

  19. Stir to combine well.

  20. Continue simmering for about 10 mins.

  21. Remove from heat and allow the sauce to cool down slightly, for about 15 mins.

  22. Transfer into a blender.

  23. Add in lime juice, zest and sesame oil.

  24. Blitz until fine paste forms.

  25. Taste and adjust for seasoning with salt or honey.

  26. Transfer into a sterlized mason jar.

  27. *It can keep chilled in the fridge for about 1 month.*

  28. Prepare simple slaw.

  29. In a large mixing bowl, add cabbage, carrot and green onion.

  30. Add mayo and toss to combine well. Toss, toss, toss.

  31. Taste and adjust for seasoning with salt and pepper.

  32. Cover with cling film and chill in the fridge until ready to use.

  33. Prepare the chicken.

  34. Place chicken on a working surface.

  35. Butterfly the chicken into halves.

  36. Transfer into a shallow bowl.

  37. Add in cinnamon, paprika, salt and pepper.

  38. Rub to coat the chicken well.

  39. Cover with cling film and marinade the chicken in the fridge overnight.

  40. In a griddle over medium high heat, drizzle olive oil.

  41. Once oil is heated up, add in the chicken.

  42. Grill the chicken until cook thru or slightly charred on both sides.

  43. It should take about 1 to 2 mins per side.

  44. Remove from heat and set aside.

  45. Assemble the burger.

  46. To make the green burger buns, add spinach and 2 TBSP of warm water into a blender.

  47. Blitz until smooth.

  48. Pour the spinach paste into a bowl thru a fine strainer.

  49. Using the back of a spoon, press to squeeze out all the liquid.

  50. Discard the residue.

  51. You should have about 1/4 cup of spinach juice.

  52. Add water or reduce the volume accordingly.

  53. Replace 1/4 cup of milk with the 1/4 cup of spinach juice from the mantou recipe. You should have 3/4 cup of milk and 1/4 cup of spinach juice.

  54. Slice mantou into halves lengthwise.

  55. Spread the BBQ sauce onto the bottom and top buns.

  56. Place the chicken patties onto the bottom buns.

  57. Place some of the simple slaw over the top.

  58. Spoon some more of that BBQ sauce over the top.

  59. Cover with the top buns.

  60. Serve immediately.

#burger #chicken #anythinginbetween #halloween

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