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Saturday, May 30, 2015

Cuban Frita Burgers

When I lived in Miami, there were burgers of all kinds--Korean Fusion burgers from Sakaya Kitchen and their delicious food truck, there were Colombian burgers with sweet and savory sauces of all varieties imaginable, and Cuban burgers, called fritas.  While Colombian burgers were probably my favorite, the frita (free.tah) is the most practical to make at home with ease.  These burgers are smoky and garlicky with a nice sweet zip from the ketchup.  You definitely do not need any sauces or anything like that on these burgers, as they are packed with flavor.  Cheese is optional, but potato stix are a must.

These red-tinged burgers are aromatic and irresistible and are sure to please your guests.  Even the pickiest eater will be won over by this Cuban treat.  If you're lucky, you can go old fashioned and sub the ground pork for Spanish chorizo.  Be careful here as it must be Spanish, not Mexican chorizo.  You want that nice paprika-laced sausage that isn't the least bit spicy.  In Miami, they sell ground Spanish chorizo in the pack, just as you can buy ground beef here.  If you can find Spanish chorizo around, it's even better.  Either way, you're in for a real treat!  I hope this delicious frita becomes a staple in your home, just as it is in mine.  For me, it's the only way to eat a burger at home, well...this and portabella mushroom and beef combo.  Enjoy!

Cuban fritas

1/2 - 3/4 lb ground pork
1 lb ground beef
2-3 TB ketchup (or 2 TB tomato paste can also work)
5 cloves garlic, minced
1/3 onion, finely diced
1 tsp cumin
1-1/2 tsp paprika
1 tsp salt
1 TB cilantro leaves (measure before chopping) then chop (most people don't use this, but I love it)

1.Mix together by hand all ingredients above and grill as normal.

2. Top the burgers with shoestring potato stix, a slice of cheese.  Typically, you use American cheese, but I like provolone too.  In fact, I like to use one slice of each, yum!

References for inspiration

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