asked eight chefs to choose classic cocktails and craft burgers inspired by them for what we’re calling the Cocktail Burger Project. For his selection, Errol LeBlanc of Pamplona in Las Vegas drew flavors from the Mojito cocktail and created a burger with ground lamb, ground beef, citrus mint chimichurri, and rum glaze. You can make one too; LeBlanc’s recipe is below. Drinking a Mojito with your Mojito burger is optional, but recommended.
Burger Patties1 lb.
Ground lamb1 lb.
80% lean ground beef 4
Field Greens Chimichurri 1/2 C.
Packed mint leaves 1/4 c.
Packed cilantro leaves 1/2 c.
White onion, chopped 2
Garlic cloves, very finely chopped 1/2 c.
Olive oil 1 oz.
Fresh lime juice, with pulp1 tsp.
Sugar (start with less and add more as desired) 1/4 tsp.
Dried chili flakes (optional)
Salt, to taste rum glaze 1 oz.
Dark rum (i use zaya) 2 oz.
Honey (i use wildflower honey) 1/4 tsp.
Dried chili flakes
Kosher salt, to taste
Directions For the Chimichurri
- Chop mint and cilantro finely with a very sharp knife. (This can be done in the food processor instead, but the consistency of the herbs will be rough and unrefined. Never use a blender; it will turn into baby food.)
- Chop onion and garlic finely, with the same very sharp knife. Add to mint, cilantro, olive oil, lime juice, and sugar in a bowl and stir to combine. Add chili flakes if desired. Season with kosher salt to taste. (Hint: Lightly season and let the chimichurri “rest” for a few minutes. Stir again and taste. Add more salt if desired.)
For the Glaze
- Combine honey, and chili flakes in a bowl. Season lightly with salt as desired.
For the Burger Assembly
- Gently combine ground beef and lamb, and portion into 1/2-lb. patties (smaller or larger patties can be made if desired).
- Grill patties over high heat. When patties are nearly done, brush with rum glaze on both sides while turning. Do this multiple times, allowing glaze to caramelize and coat patty. Remove from heat and let rest.
- Toast buns lightly.
- Place burger patty on bun and top with chimichurri, then field greens. Dress bun top with mayonnaise or garlic aioli if desired and serve.