2015 Champion Burger Recipe – The Porchetta

In the final heat of the 2015 World Burger Championships, the top 10 competitors had to create a burger recipe using citrus. For the round, Rusty Johnson created a facefull of texture and taste with  “The Porchetta.” This short-rib burger is topped with luscious lemon-roasted pork belly, offset by crispy pork cracklins, and an array of lemon-infused condiments.

The Porchetta” scored the highest in the final round of the 2015 World Burger Championships, and pushed Rusty Johnson over the top to win the event, and the $10,000 prize.

The Porchetta burger recipe
Top-scoring burger, The Porchetta, from 2015 Burger Champ, Rusty Johnson

Below, Rusty Johnson shares his winning burger recipe.

Lemon zest figures prominently in this recipe, so keep the zester handy. The zest, said Johnson, freshens up the recipe and gives strong citrus notes without overwhelming the burger with the biting lemon acidity.

At first glance, the list of steps and ingredients seems overwhelming, but it is really just three sauces which can be easily put together while the pork belly cooks. The saucy toppings (and the pork rub) all use similar flavors — lemon, fennel seed, coriander seed and red chili — thus the ingredient list is shorter than it looks.

A quick note on the red chilis — While Johnson used crushed red chili flakes at the World Burger Championship, he suggests  1-2 de-seeded, fresh Thai red chili’s (or any other hot red pepper for from your area). “They are hot so one adding the second one will bring the heat,” Johnson said. “One isn’t too bad, adds some warmth.” He also notes that if using chili flakes, (especially for the pork belly) run them through a spice grinder (or crush with a mortar and pestle) so there won’t be big chunks.

When preparing The Porchetta, time management is key. It might be handy to start marinating the tomatoes for the bruschetta mix right after you get the pork belly in the oven. Also remember, the tomatoes need to cool in the refrigerator before mixing with the remaining ingredients.

 

 

The Porchetta
Print Recipe
Ground short rib patty topped with provolone cheese and slow-cooked lemon-pork-belly porchetta and cracklings. Topped with a lemon gremolata, grilled grape tomato and goat cheese bruschetta, and lemon, caper, and garlic aioli.
Servings
6 burgers
Cook Time Passive Time
45 minutes 2 hours
Servings
6 burgers
Cook Time Passive Time
45 minutes 2 hours
The Porchetta
Print Recipe
Ground short rib patty topped with provolone cheese and slow-cooked lemon-pork-belly porchetta and cracklings. Topped with a lemon gremolata, grilled grape tomato and goat cheese bruschetta, and lemon, caper, and garlic aioli.
Servings
6 burgers
Cook Time Passive Time
45 minutes 2 hours
Servings
6 burgers
Cook Time Passive Time
45 minutes 2 hours
Ingredients
Gremolata and Olive Oil
Lemon, Caper, Garlic Aioli
Grilled Grape Tomato and Goat Cheese Bruschetta
Porchetta
Burger Patty
Additional Ingredients
Servings: burgers
Instructions
Gremolata and Olive Oil
  1. Toast coriander, chili flakes and fennel seed in pan on the stove top on medium for 1 minute constantly tossing.
  2. Grind seasonings to powder.
  3. Place seasonings and other ingredients into a food processor and blend till smooth.
Lemon, Caper, Garlic Aioli
  1. Blend all ingredients in a food processor and chill in fridge for 1 hour.
Grilled Grape Tomato and Goat Cheese Bruschetta
  1. Marinate tomatoes for 15 minutes in Italian dressing
  2. Place seasoned tomatoes on grill for 2 minutes on high.
  3. Remove tomatoes and let rest for 30 minutes in the fridge.
  4. Add basil vinegar and goats cheese and mix together.
Porchetta
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Make rub - Toast fennel and chilis then grind to powder. Mix in remaining ingredients.
  3. Score skin of pork belly in one inch increments .
  4. Oil outside of pork with oil and generously apply the rub to all sides.
  5. Cook Pork~ 1) Place pork in 350 degree oven for one hour in a baking pan with a rack. 2) After one hour, turn oven temperature up to 450 and continue cooking until skin puffs up and browns. 3) Remove the pork from oven, and carefully remove the browned skin from the pork belly. Set aside the roasted, browned skin. 4) Return the pork to the oven and cook until the internal temperature reaches 185 degrees.
  6. Slice the pork belly into thin strips, like bacon. Dice skin into ½ inch pork cracklings.
Burger Patty
  1. Grill patty till done, seasoning with salt and pepper.
Recipe Notes

Assemble the Porchetta Burger in this order:

Bottom of brioche bun
Aioli
Bruschetta
Patty
Provolone Cheese
Sliced Porchetta
Pork Cracklings
Bruschetta
Gremolata
Baby Arugula
Aioli
Top of brioche bun

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