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Chorizo-Spiked Pork Burgers with Roasted Corn & Poblano Salsa and Avocado Butter

I love Mexican food and this recipe was inspired by one of my favorite Mexican dishes- carnitas. Carnitas is a traditional Mexican dish in which pork is braised or roasted for hours until it is so tender it can be pulled apart with a fork. I decided to make a pork burger incorporating flavorful chorizo and chipotles in adobo to give a smoky, slow-cooked taste. The spicy burger patties are nicely balanced by the rich, creamy avocado butter. And the roasted corn and poblano salsa adds a nice crunch and sweetness. I also added bacon- although not a traditional Mexican ingredient, I find that it complements the smoky flavors of the burger, plus you can’t go wrong with bacon on a burger!

Ingredients 

Avocado Butter:
2 Haas avocadoes (8 oz each), peeled and pitted
4 ounces unsalted butter, room temperature
2 tablespoons lime juice
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons minced cilantro
1 teaspoon kosher salt

Roasted Corn Salsa:
4 ears fresh sweet corn, husks and silks removed
2 medium poblano peppers
4 tablespoons canola oil, divided
¼ cup finely chopped red onion
3 tablespoons lime juice
3 tablespoons chopped cilantro
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon kosher salt

Patties:
2 lbs. ground pork
8 ounces spicy Mexican chorizo, removed from casing and crumbled
1/3 cup grated yellow onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon minced chipotles in adobo
1 tablespoon adobo sauce
1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt
½ teaspoon black pepper

12 slices bacon
Canola oil for brushing grill rack
6 slices Monterey Jack cheese
6 good-quality brioche rolls, split

Instructions 

Preheat a gas grill to medium high heat.

To make the avocado butter place the avocado flesh, butter, lime juice, garlic, cilantro, and salt in a mini food processor. Blend until combined. Place in a bowl, cover and refrigerate.

To make the roasted corn salsa, drizzle the corn and poblano peppers with 2 tablespoons canola oil and place them on the grill. Grill the peppers until they are charred on all sides, then place them in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Rest for 20 minutes. Grill the corn until it is browned on all sides, then cool. Cut off the kernels and place 2 cups of corn kernels in a medium bowl. Add the red onion, lime juice, cilantro, honey, cumin, salt, and remaining 2 tablespoons of oil and toss to combine. When the poblano peppers are cool, gently scrape off the charred skin. Remove the stem and seeds and chop the remaining flesh to yield ½ cup chopped peppers. Stir the chopped peppers into the salsa. Cover and set aside.

To make the patties, combine the ground pork, chorizo, onion, garlic, chipotles in adobo, adobo sauce, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Be careful not to overwork the meat. Form the meat into 6 equal patties making a slight indentation in the center of each one. Cover and set aside.

Cook the bacon in a large fireproof skillet on the grill until crispy. Drain on paper towels. Cover with aluminum foil and set aside.

Brush the grill rack with canola oil. Place the burger patties on the rack, cover, and cook 4-6 minutes on each side for medium. Place the cheese slices on the patties during the last 2-3 minutes of grilling. Place the buns, cut side down, on the outer edges of the rack to toast lightly during the last 2 minutes of grilling.

To assemble the burgers, spread some avocado butter on the cut sides of the buns. Place a cheese-topped patty on each bun bottom. Top with 2 slices of bacon and some roasted corn and poblano salsa. Add bun tops and serve.