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Green chilli cheeseburgers

Burger - Mushroom Onion Burger - 1647From Richard H. Turner’s Prime: This started life as an ode to the famous Green Chilli Cheeseburger at the Bobcat Bite restaurant in Santa Fe, but as it developed I added more and more chillies. It might seem like a competitive attempt to burn your tastebuds into submission, but the combination of chillies provides complex flavour that can still be appreciated above the heat. Where chilli quantities are concerned, this recipe is merely a guide…

Serves 4


2–4 whole green chillies
2–4 teaspoons Adobo Chilli Sauce (see below)
4 tablespoons mayonnaise
800g (1lb 12oz) burger mince
8 slices of Ogleshield or Cheddar cheese
4 large Burger Buns
4 leaves of Bibb (Butterhead) lettuce
2–4 tablespoons sliced pickled green jalapenos
Maldon sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Grill the fresh chillies, or place them directly over a gas burner, turning occasionally, until charred and blistered all over. Transfer to a sheet of foil and wrap tightly. Set aside for 5 minutes, then remove from the foil and carefully peel off most of the skin. Discard the stems and seeds and roughly chop the chillies.

Combine the Adobo Chilli Sauce and mayonnaise in a small bowl and stir to combine. Set aside.

Blend together your choice of minced chuck steak, fat and bone marrow and form 4 loose patties. Season and pan-fry one side of the burger patties, then press the chopped fresh chillies into the raw side.

Flip the patties to fry the other side and top each patty with 2 slices of cheese.

Split and toast the buns directly over the hot side of the grill until browned, about 30 seconds.

Spread the base of each bun with the Adobo Chilli Sauce mayonnaise, then add the lettuce and the burger patties. Top the patties with pickled jalapeños, then close the buns and serve.

Adobo chilli sauce
Makes approximately 300ml (½ pint)

8 garlic cloves
5 jalapeno chillies, halved lengthways and deseeded
large bunch of coriander
large bunch of parsley
olive oil
Maldon sea salt flakes

Heat a frying pan over a high heat and char the garlic and chillies. Tip into a food processor or blender and add the herbs and a generous pinch of salt, then blitz. Slowly pour in enough olive oil to achieve a sauce-like consistency and continue to blitz. Taste and correct the seasoning if needed. Store covered in the fridge in a sterilized container with a layer of olive oil on top.

Burger buns
Makes 8 large buns

125ml (4fl oz) warm milk
200ml (7fl oz) warm water
2 teaspoons active dry yeast
20g (¾oz) sugar
500–525g (1lb 2oz–1lb 3oz) strong white flour, plus extra for kneading
2 teaspoons fine sea salt
1 teaspoon vitamin C powder
3 large free-range eggs
40g (1½oz) unsalted butter, softened
1 tablespoon water

Combine the milk, water, yeast and sugar in a small bowl, whisk well and leave to stand for 5 minutes until foamy.

Mix the flour, salt and vitamin C powder in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook. Add the water/milk mixture and mix on medium-low speed until just combined. With the mixer still running, add 2 of the eggs, separately, waiting for the first egg to be fully incorporated before adding the next. Add the butter 1 tablespoon at a time until fully incorporated.

Continue to mix on medium-low speed for 2–3 minutes. If the dough appears too sticky, add more flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, until it pulls away from the sides of the mixer (it will still stick to the base). Continue kneading until the dough is smooth and elastic, 5–6 minutes longer.

Loosely cover the bowl with clingfilm or a clean tea towel and let it rise until doubled in volume (about 1 hour at room temperature, or 6 hours in the fridge).

Turn the dough out on to a lightly floured surface and, using a bench scraper or sharp knife, cut it into 8 equal pieces, each about 120g (4½oz).

Line 2 baking sheets with nonstick baking paper. Form each piece of dough into a ball and place on the baking sheets, 4 per sheet, about 10cm (4 inches) apart. Spray with nonstick cooking spray (or brush with oil), cover loosely with clingfilm, and allow to rise for about 1 hour at room temperature, until about doubled in size.

Adjust the oven racks to lower-middle and upper-middle positions and preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F), Gas Mark 6. Gently press the dough balls down until 10–12cm (4–4½ inches) wide and 4cm (1½ inches) high. Beat the remaining egg with 1 tablespoon water and brush the entire exposed surface of the buns. Bake them for 7 minutes, then remove from the oven, brush with the remaining egg wash, and bake for 10–15 minutes longer, until a deep, shiny, golden brown, rotating the baking sheets from top to bottom and front to back halfway through baking. Transfer the buns to a wire rack and allow to cool completely.

Prime copyRichard H. Turner’s Prime is available here.