Dark Days Meal 8: Venison Burger on Grilled Jalapeno-Cheddar Bread
For the record, I am having a blast with the Dark Days Challenge. (That’s why I am no longer counting weeks, but rather meals.) I am loving trying to figure out how to make a local meal, and what local really means to me. What I mean by that is that for me local isn’t just locally grown (or raised) food, but local is about supporting small, mom-and-pop businesses. I’m amazed by the number of people who have taken their passion for food and started businesses. They’re going up against big business. They deserve support.
This meal is a combination of locally grown/raised and locally made with love. I have to say, it is one the best burgers I have had in a long time. And that is saying something—I am a world-class burger addict. I got the Jalapeno Cheddar bread at the Leesburg Farmer’s Market from Becky’s Pastries in Sterling. It’s a dense, heart bread. The jalapenos are pretty spicy, but not overpowering. The smoked cheddar is from Trickling Springs Creamery, and I got it at The Maple Avenue Market. The most exciting thing for me was the arugula. I almost kissed the farmer at the Leesburg Market who had the fresh arugula and tomatoes (which I didn’t eat with this meal, but have been enjoying today). The onions and eggs also came from The Maple Avenue Market—wonderful place!
The onions mixed with the venison serve two purposes: one to help act as a binding agent so the burgers don’t totally fall apart on the grill (the egg helps there too) and the second to add some sweetness to balance the meat. I chose only to add salt and pepper, knowing that the bread, cheese, and arugula all had distinct and strong tastes—I wanted everything to work together, not compete for attention. The verdict from Rick? A three-kisser.
Recipe: Venison Burgers on Grilled Jalapeno Cheddar Bread
Summary: A spicy, sweet, smoky treat.
- 1 lb ground venison
- ½ cup red onion, chopped finely
- 1 egg
- salt and pepper to taste
- Smoked Cheddar Cheese
- Jalapeno & Cheese bread
- Preheat the grill.
- In a mixing bowl, combine the ground venison, onion, egg, salt and pepper. Mix well.
- Form into four patties.
- Carefully put on the grill. These are likely to be very soft and may want to break apart on the grill. I put the patty on a spatula and gently slide it off onto the grill. By the time the patty is cooked on the first side (about 5 minutes), it will be firm enough to flip without breaking.
- While the burgers are cooking, slice the smoked Cheddar and set aside.
- Slice the bread and butter both sides.
- At the grill, flip the burgers. Layer cheese on each burger.
- Place the bread on the grill and grill for about a minute. Flip the bread and grill the other side for about one minute.
- Remove everything from the grill.
- Place one burger on a piece of bread and top with arugula.
Preparation time: 5 minute(s)
Cooking time: 8 minute(s)
Number of servings (yield): 4
Copyright © Susan Rose.
I served these with Route 11 potato chips. While the ingredients (all three of them) aren’t local, the company is. And they’re worth supporting. They’ve decided to remain small, and they are very committed to environmental sustainability. Love it!