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Waterman Inspired Chesapeake Bay Rockfish Burger

It is a great privilege to live on the Chesapeake Bay. We watch the watermen at work every day; in rain, shine or Nor'easter. This burger celebrates the 3 greatest resources of our Bay- oysters, crabs, and rockfish(striped bass). It is a great waterman lunch since they don't have time to sit on their workboats and enjoy lunch on fine china!

Ingredients 

Lump Crab Sauce:
3/4 lb. jumbo lump crab meat
3/4 cup whipped cream cheese
3/4 cup sour cream
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
zest of 1 lemon
juice of 1 lemon
1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
3/4 tsp. seasalt

Rockfish patties:
2 lbs. ground rockfish fillets
3/4 cup finely chopped red onion
1 cup chopped flatleaf parsley
3 tbsp. Chesapeake Bay seasoning(ex. Old Bay)
zest of 1 lemon
juice of 1 lemon

12 thick slices of pepper bacon

Fried oysters:
1.5 dozen freshly shucked oysters
1/2 cup rice flour
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp. sea salt
1 cup panko bread crumbs

vegetable oil to brush grill rack
6 round ciabatta rolls, split
1 stick softened, unsalted butter
2 tbsp. coarse sea salt
1 cup shredded iceberg lettuce
1 cup arugula
6 slices beefsteak tomato

Instructions 

1. preheat grill to medium high
2. To make crab sauce: combine crab meat, cream cheese, sour cream, cilantro, lemon zest and juice, cayenne pepper and salt. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
3. To make patties: combine rockfish, red onion, parsley, bay seasoning, zest and juice of lemon. Gently combine. Form 6 equal patties, cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
4. Cook bacon in nonreactive frying pan on grill until crisp. Drain on paper towels, reserve until ready to use. Reserve bacon drippings.
5. To prepare oysters, set up breading station. Rice flour in 1 bowl. Eggs with salt and cayenne pepper in 2nd bowl. Bread crumbs in 3rd bowl. Dredge oysters in flour, then egg mixture, then bread crumbs. Fry oysters in bacon drippings in batches until crisp. Drain on paper towels and reserve.
6. Brush grill rack with vegetable oil. Place patties on rack, cover and grill 4-5 minutes. Turn and grill another 3-4 minutes for medium or longer if desired.
7. Spread cut edges of rolls with softened butter. Divide sea salt equally and press into butter. Toast rolls on rack during final few minutes of cooking.
8. To assemble burgers: place generous amount of crab sauce on bottom of roll. Add equal amounts of lettuce and arugula, 1 slice tomato, 2 slices bacon, patty and 3 oysters per burger. Add small amount of sauce to oysters, add roll top and serve.
Makes 6 servings

Comments 

When I clicked submit; the "Why this is a great local American Burger" section was blank although I filled it out. So I am placing that information here.
It is a great privilege to live on the Chesapeake Bay. We watch the watermen at work every day; rain, shine or Nor'easter. It is a great waterman lunch since they don't have time to sit on their workboats and enjoy lunch on fine china!
This burger celebrates the 3 greatest resources of our bay- oysters, crabs, and rockfish(striped bass). One bite into this burger will transport you to the beautiful shores of the Chesapeake Bay!