Would you just look at that title? I mean, if you’re not drooling by the end of it then you may need to see a doctor. Sure, it’s long, but shortening it would be a disservice to this recipe. I almost feel bad for calling it a burger, because it’s so much more than that—it has all the elements one would find in a fine dining meal, including complementary flavors, beautiful presentation, skillful execution, and high-end chefs’ favorite culinary companion: alcohol.
Ingredients play a big role in this recipe, because it’s their quality that make this meal shine. For example, replacing the Beyond Burger with some standard, frozen soy patty is not going to have the same effect. The Beyond Burger’s realistic meatiness, makes it a prime candidate for absorbing marinades in a way that’s comparable to real meat (same goes for Impossible meat, which is yet to be available at major markets). Its soft texture also allows it to hold onto seasonings exceptionally well, hence the cracked black pepper in the recipe. If you’re familiar with meat-based cooking, you’d know that crusting beef in black pepper is a technique classically used when cooking filet mignon, which adds a light crunch, peppery bite, and complex flavor. Hhheellooooo flavor town.
I could go through all the ingredients here and explain to you why it’s important to buy the highest quality products out there, but I think you get the point—the better the ingredient, the better your food’s going to be. Simple as that. I’ll recommend specific brands down in the recipe so you have a reference point when shopping.
Aside from that, it’s important not to rush caramelization time. Caramelizing onions is far different than grilling or sautéing them, as caramelization slowly breaks down natural sugars into new compounds via low heat, oxidation, and moisture removal. Grilling onions on the other hand simply browns the exterior via the Maillard reaction, which is accomplished by high heat. Here’s some quick differences between the two!
Caramelized vs Grilled Onions:
- Deep vs Fresh
- Soft vs Crisp
- Deep Brown vs Charred
- Sweet vs Pungent
- Long Cook Time vs Short Cook Time
All in all, this is the most exquisite vegan burger we’ve ever tasted. By stripping away the normal constructs that surround the idea of a “hamburger,” we’re able to elevate a “casual sandwich” to a meal that carries the sophistication typically reserved for a fine dining experience. After trying it for yourself, we hope you feel the same way.
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You Ain’t Ever Seen a Burger This Sexy
Red Wine Marinated Beyond Burgers Seared in Crushed Black Pepper, Served with Balsamic Beet Puree, Smoked Provolone Cheese, and Caramelized Onions (vegan)
Butter-toasted pretzel buns & crisp leaf lettuce complete this sophisticated, juicy, and perfectly balanced burger.
- 2 small beets, peeled & finely diced
- olive oil
- ~1/2 c water
- 2 tbsps balsamic vinegar
- 2 Beyond Burger patties
- 1 cup red wine (Cabernets and Malbecs work nicely)
- ~3 tbsps fresh crushed black pepper
- 2 tbsps Melt vegan butter
- 1 large red onion, thinly sliced into half moon shapes
- 2 tbsps Melt vegan butter
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp sugar (cane, refined, or powdered)
- Beet Purée: Pre-heat oven to 400° F and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper. Toss beats with enough olive oil to coat along with a heavy pinch of salt. Roast in oven until fork tender; about 35 minutes.
- Transfer beets to a mini food processor or personal blender cup along with water and balsamic vinegar. Blend until smooth, scraping down sides as necessary; if mixture’s too thick, add a little extra water to loosen. Set aside for now.
- Onions: Heat a large sauté pan over medium heat. Once hot, add in two tablespoons of butter and let it melt. Toss in onions, salt, sugar, and cook until they just barely begin to brown, about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Reduce heat to low and cook until soft, sweet, and greatly reduced in size; about 45 minutes.
- Burgers: While onions caramelize, place Beyond Burgers in a cake pan or casserole dish and pour in enough red wine to come half way up both the burgers. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the fridge for 20 minutes. Remove from fridge, flip patties, and stash for another 20 minutes.
- Place black pepper on a plate, drain patties from red wine, and coat both sides of the burgers in a hefty layer of black pepper. Brush off excess and set on a clean plate.
- Heat a medium sauté pan over medium-high heat. Once hot, add in butter, let it melt, and toss in burgers. Cook until browned on first side (about 4 minutes), flip, lay a slice of cheese on each patty, place on a lid, and cook until browned on second side, red in the center, and cheese is melted (~4 more minutes).
- Transfer burgers to a clean plate and keep pan on the heat. Spread a thin layer of butter on the inside of your buns, place them cut side down in the pan, and cook until edges are lightly golden; about 2 minutes.
- Assembly: Place a layer of lettuce on bottom buns, topped by burgers, beet purée, caramelized onions, and top bun. Enjoy while fresh alongside fried fingerling potato slices.