About a year and a half ago I was driving up from Los Angeles to Portland and I stopped in Eugene for the night because my brother attends the University of Oregon there. The next day we skipped breakfast and went out for an early lunch at his favorite local eatery, Dickie Jo’s, an amazing and delicious burger joint. They let you pick out all the toppings and they have a great variety of cheeses for their burgers, in addition to having fantastic banana milkshakes. I ended up with my brother’s favorite, a bacon blue cheese burger with caramelized onions. It was incredible. I’m usually fairly overwhelmed by blue cheese, but when it melts it seems to have a much milder taste, or maybe it just seemed milder because of all the other great flavors that were going on in the burger, particularly the sweetness of the caramelized onions. Sweet Lord, my mouth is beginning to water just thinking about it. I re-created this earth-shattering burger for my family while I was home in Portland for the holidays, (no we didn’t eat burgers for Christmas, I was home for a couple weeks so there was ample time for burger eating before Christmas), and they came out just as outstanding as I remember them being. My family loved them, and all eight of the burgers were devoured within twenty-four hours. I hope you guys give this burger a try, it really is an amazing salute to ground meat.
Heat the butter in a medium sized frying pan over medium-high heat. Add the sliced sweet onions and lower the heat to allow them to simmer in the butter. Cover, and continue to cook them for about 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally so that they do not burn, until they look like the photo on the left. Once the onions are done, place them in a bowl and set them aside. Then grill the bacon in the same frying pan until they have reached the desired crispiness.
While the onions and bacon are cooking, mix the ground beef, worcestershire sauce, siracha, cumin, and salt and pepper together in a large bowl until well blended. Shape the mixture into patties that are about 1 inch in height and 5 inches across. It is okay if they are wider than the buns, the patties will shrink when they’re cooked. Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan and add several burgers to the pan, giving them an inch or so of space between patties. Cook them to the desired done-ness, (i.e. rare, medium-rare, well-done…), making sure to flip them so both sides are cooked evenly.
Once you flip them a final time, add 1 tablespoon of crumbled blue cheese to the top of each patty and allow to sit there for a few minutes before removing the patty from the pan. Place the patties on a tray lined with paper towels. Repeat this process with all of the patties until they’ve been cooked. Toast the buns lightly, then lay them out open-faced. Place 1 tablespoon of thousand island dressing on the bottom of each bun, then place a tomato slice, a patty, a small scoop of caramelized onions, a piece or two of bacon, a leaf of lettuce, and then place the top bun on top of the lettuce. If you want you can also put some ketchup on the top bun before placing it on the burger. Serve immediately.