For the burgers
2 lbs ground beef 85% lean
1 large apple
1 teaspoon salt
For the onions
1 large onion thinly sliced
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 hamburger buns
6 oz. sharp Vermont cheddar
Other condiments of choice
A new take on classic grilling fare, these hamburgers bring together a variety of complementary flavors into a simple camp-friendly meal.
First, the onions are caramelized using a small sauté pan. The key here is to keep the heat low and don’t rush them. The savory and slightly sweet flavor that develops as a result of slow caramelization is a killer accompaniment to the sharp flavor of the sharp cheddar.
Next, peel the skin off of an apple and grate it. (We tried grating a few apples with the skin on and it was disaster.) Then the shredded apple is mixed together with the hamburger meat. Not only does this help keep the burger moist throughout, but it also ensures that the apple flavor is in each and every bite.
Once the burger patties are fully formed you can go ahead and salt them to taste. A few shakes per patty should do it. This keeps the salt on the outside of the burger and prevent the salt from prematurely breaking down the meat proteins.
Then pop them on the grill and cook to your desired wellness. Assemble with the sliced sharp cheddar, sautéed onions, condiments of choice, and enjoy.
Caramelize the onions
Add the onions, olive oil, and salt to a small skillet and place over the fire at medium-low heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are soft and beginning to caramelize, about 20-25 minutes.
Form the burger patties
Meanwhile, peel & grate the apple on the large holes of a cheese grater. Mix with the ground beef and salt, then form into six patties.
Grill the burgers
Cook the patties over medium-high heat, about 3-4 minutes on each side. Toast the buns, then build the burgers, topping each with the cheddar, caramelized onions, and any other condiments you wish.
Make ahead at home
Form the patties at home, omitting the salt. Prepare the caramelized onions at home on your stovetop. Store the patties and the onions in separate airtight containers in your cooler until ready to cook. Salt the patties right before grilling at your campsite and reheat the onions in a small skillet until warmed through.