Cajun BBQ burgers with rosemary and garlic wedges
For the burgers
- 1kg/2lb 4oz beef mince (15% fat)
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 100ml/3½fl oz Irish stout
- 2 tbsp chopped fresh thyme
- 2 tbsp fresh brown breadcrumbs
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp ground black pepper
- olive oil, for frying
For the Cajun spice mix
- 2 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp garlic granules
- 1 tsp onion powder
- ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
- ½ tsp mild chilli powder
- ½ tsp dried thyme
- ½ tsp dried oregano
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 tsp ground black pepper
For the sweet and sour BBQ sauce
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, chopped
- 400g tin plum tomatoes
- 1 tbsp Cajun spice (see above)
- 1 tbsp tomato purée
- 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 4–6 tbsp brown sugar
For the rosemary and garlic oven wedges
- 6 medium–large Maris Piper potatoes, skin on, cut into wedges
- 8 tbsp olive oil
- 3 sprigs fresh rosemary, leaves only, roughly chopped
- 10 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
To make the burgers, put the beef mince, onion, stout, thyme, breadcrumbs, salt and pepper in a large bowl and use your hands to mix together well. Divide the mixture into six and shape into patties. Put them in the freezer for at least 30 minutes to firm up. Alternatively, chill for an hour or until ready to cook.
To make the Cajun spice mix, mix all the ingredients together. Set aside.
To make the BBQ sauce, heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over a medium heat and fry the onion and garlic for 6–8 minutes until soft. Add the tomatoes and break them up using a wooden spoon. Add 1 tablespoon of the Cajun spice mix and cook for a minute or two, then add the tomato purée, balsamic vinegar and 4 tablespoons of brown sugar. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 25 minutes until thickened. Taste and check the seasoning, adding up to 2 tablespoons more brown sugar if needed. Set aside to cool.
To make the wedges, preheat the oven to 210C/190C Fan/Gas 6½. Soak the potatoes in cold water for 10 minutes, then drain. Bring a large pan of water to the boil, add the wedges and boil for 5–6 minutes, drain and pat dry. Transfer to a large bowl and add 5 tablespoons of the olive oil, the rosemary and garlic. Season with salt and pepper and stir to coat the wedges.
Heat the remaining olive oil in a baking tray. Once hot, carefully tip the potato wedges onto the tray and cook for 40–45 minutes, turning frequently, until golden brown and crisp.
Reduce the oven temperature to 190C/170C Fan/Gas 5.
To cook the burgers, heat a large griddle pan drizzled with oil until smoking hot. Sear the burgers for 2 minutes on each side. Transfer to a baking tray and brush a teaspoon or so of the BBQ sauce on each. Cook in the oven for 6–8 minutes, adding a cheese slice to each burger for the last couple of minutes of cooking.
To serve, spread mayonnaise on both halves of the buns. Arrange lettuce leaves on the bottom halves and top with the burgers. Add the tomato and red onion slices. Cut each bacon rasher in half and arrange on top. Add a dollop of the BBQ sauce and the top halves of the buns. Serve with the rosemary and garlic wedges.
The Cajun spice mix makes more than is needed for this recipe. Store the rest in a sealed jar and use to season chicken or jambalaya, or mix with mayonnaise for a tasty dip.