Here’s the thing. I’m not normally one to go for these kinds of “impossible” burgers.
Y’know, the kind of cheeseburger that’s so intent on piling every single thing in the cupboard on top of a forlorn, forgotten beef patty, that the top bun stand precariously balanced atop an 18 inch sloppy pile of lettuce, tomato, onions, cole slaw, chili cheese fries, chicken tenders, ‘Nilla Wafers, and artisinal Sriracha pickles.
They may be visually (and architecturally!) impressive, but I almost never derive as much satisfaction out of eating one of these behemoths, as I do from a more balanced, restrained combination of meat, cheese, and bun.
Every so often, though, restraint just isn’t the order of the day. Sometimes, I want to not just eat a burger, but push my whole face into it. I want to get ketchup up my nose. I want to pick sesame seeds out of my eyebrows. I want to panic, for just a second, that I might not be able to breathe. And when this urge for excess strikes, this instinct to risk personal safety and any remaining shreds of dignity on a burger experience so overwhelming and all-consuming that you almost feel afterwards that a crime has been committed, that I turn to this: The Seven-Layer Dip Burger.
It’s got all the components of the classic game day dish: A layer of refried beans. A layer of shredded, nutrient-free iceberg lettuce. A spicy, seasoned burger. Melted cheddar cheese sauce, followed by some sliced avocado, pickled jalapenos, some pico de gallo or chunky salsa, a little Mexican crema or sour cream, and a handful of sliced black olives, which nobody really likes but which have to be included, all served with a side of tortilla chips
Nuanced, it ain’t.
- 1 teaspoon butter
- 2 teaspoons flour
- ½ cup milk
- ⅓ cup shredded cheddar cheese
- ⅔ pound ground beef or From Away Burger Blend
- Dash of ground cumin
- Dash of cayenne pepper
- Dash of garlic powder
- Kosher salt and ground pepper, to taste
- Refried beans, shredded lettuce, sliced avocado, pickled jalapenos, fresh pico de gallo (or salsa), Mexican crema (or sour cream), to top burgers
- Sliced black olives
- Two rolls or hamburger buns, split and griddled in butter
- In a skillet over medium heat, melt butter. Whisk in flour until smooth, and cook until mixture begins to brown, about one minute. Slowly add milk, whisking constantly. When mixture thickens (about 1 minute more), remove from heat, and stir in shredded cheese. Set aside while you prepare the rest of the ingredients.
- Shape hamburger into two bun-sized patties, and season with a shake of cumin, garlic powder, cayenne, salt, and pepper. Cook in a skillet over high heat to desired internal temperature. To assemble each burger, top the bottom slice of bun with a swipe of refried beans, followed by the lettuce, followed by a hamburger patty. Add cheese sauce (reheating if needed), then the avocado, jalapenos, pico de gallo, Mexican crema, and sliced black olives. Top with other half of bun, and serve immediately.