Carpetbagger Burger

The Carpetbagger Burger is basically a burger stuffed with oysters, mushrooms and bacon. The unique taste of this combination is intriguingly unusual and delicious. I was introduced to a carpetbagger steak at the tender age of 18 by my mother in a wonderful little bistro in a small South African country city. Exotic tastes were completely new to me (I hadn't even eaten an oyster before) and I could not believe the flavors that exuded from the steak. I have often tried to duplicate that taste and this filling is the closest that I have come.

This Carpetbagger Burger uses Hamburger's Basic Hamburger patty as a base. Essentially, instead of 4 thick patties we make 8 thin patties. We put filling on the one half and cover with the other half forming 4 thick juicy patties with the filling in the centre.

Serves 4

For the Patties:
  • 4 Basic Hamburger patties

  • For the Filling:
  • 4 rashers bacon fried crispy, crumbled and drained on a paper towel

  • 1 cup fresh oysters, drained and coarsely chopped. If unavailable canned (not smoked) will do

  • 1/2 cup chopped mushrooms

  • 1 dash olive oil

  • 1 dash white wine

  • 1 dash cream

  • fresh ground black pepper

  • For the Rolls:
  • 4 fresh rolls, about the same size as the patties

  • sliced tomato

  • thinly sliced onion

  • lettuce

  • mayonnaise

  • Add olive oil to a saucepan and gently sauté the oysters and mushrooms until the mushrooms are tender. Drain excess oil and add the bacon, wine, cream and pepper. Stirring, bring to the boil, immediately remove from heat and allow to cool completely.

    Make the 8 thin patties.
    Spoon about a tablespoon of filling onto the centre of 4 of the patties and spread slightly leaving the outer edges clear. We need the top half to bind here.
    Cover with the remaining patties and seal the edges by pressing down on the outer perimeter with your fingers (like you would with a pie). Don't apply pressure to the centre of the patty or the filling will squirt out. Place the patties in the refrigerator until they are cold.

    Warm the remaining filling.

    Cook the patties as you normally would but taking extra care when turning. You can find extensive patty making and cooking instructions in the links in the Basic Hamburger recipe.

    Split the rolls and toast the cut surfaces lightly (under grill, on barbecue or in a pan) just before the patties are done. Spread mayonnaise on the bottom half, add a thin slice of onion, some lettuce and a slice of tomato. Now add the patty and spoon the remaining filling over the patty. Top off with the other half of the roll. Enjoy a great tasting Carpetbagger Burger.

    Bon Appetit!

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