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Heartland Pork Burgers with Ginger Apple Chutney

Heartland Pork Burgers with Ginger Apple Chutney reflect the flavorful local ingredients that are the Pride of Ohio! Here in the Midwest, pork has always been a comfort food. Since Ohio is the home of Johnny Appleseed and with apple picking being one of my family's favorite fall activities, I decided to complement the pork with my ginger apple chutney, made of tart juicy apples, honey and a select blend of spices. This creates a flavorful ,modern twist on the traditional family favorite of "pork chops and apple sauce". Finally, this hearty burger is topped by an artisan cheddar cheese purchased from nearby Amish farmers. On crisp fall Saturdays, I eagerly look forward to going with my four young children to the farmer's market to select the honey and cheddar cheese, and then stopping by the local orchard to hand pick the fresh apples right off the trees in anticipation of a creating a memorable family dinner. Heartland Pork Burgers with Ginger Apple Chutney represents the best of the bountiful food gifts from the Ohio Heartland.


Ginger Apple Chutney:
3 tablespoons salted butter
3/4 cup finely chopped red onion
2 1/2 cups diced, peeled and cored tart apples, such as granny smith
1/4 cup white balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons honey
4 teaspoons finely minced, peeled fresh ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup chopped red onion
2 tablespoons minced, peeled fresh ginger
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic
2 pounds ground pork
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
4 teaspoons soy sauce, preferably tamari
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
vegetable oil to wipe on grill rack
6-1 1/2 ounce slices sharp cheddar cheese
6 bakery style corn dusted kaiser rolls, split
3 cups baby arugula leaves


Heat a gas grill to medium high heat.
To make the Ginger Apple Chutney, place butter in a large, heat safe, fireproof skillet and place skillet on grill rack. When butter has melted, add onion and saute until onion is tender. Add apples, vinegar, honey, ginger, cardamom, crushed red pepper and salt and cook, stirring occasionally , until apples are crisp tender and mixture is thickened, about 4-5 minutes. Keep warm.
To make the patties, place a medium, heat safe, fireproof skillet on grill rack. Add olive oil and heat until hot. Add onion, ginger and salt. Saute until onion is tender and just starting to turn golden. Add garlic to onion mixture during last 2 minutes of cooking, taking care not to over cook garlic. Cool onion mixture to room temperature.
Place pork in a large mixing bowl. Add cooled onion mixture, basil, soy sauce, pepper and sesame oil. Blend mixture carefully so as not to compact meat. Form mixture into 6 equally sized patties.
Wipe the grill rack with vegetable oil.
Place patties on hot grill rack. Cover and cook 10-12 minutes and internal temperature reads 160 degrees on instant read thermometer, or to desired degree of doneness, turning once during cooking.
Add 1 slice of cheese to each patty during last 2 minutes of cooking patties to melt.
Place rolls cut side down on outer edges of grill rack to toast during last few minutes of cooking patties.
To assemble burgers, place a portion of arugula each roll bottom, followed by a cheese topped patty, an equal portion of Ginger Apple Chutney and roll tops. Serve immediately and enjoy
Yield: 6 burgers.


You are going to love these burgers!