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IngredientsKansas City BBQ Sauce:

1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 cup apple juice
1 6-ounce can tomato paste
1/4 cup vinegar
2 tablespoons packed dark brown sugar
2 tablespoons molasses
1 teaspoon yellow mustard
1 tablespoon paprika
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon prepared horseradish

Garlicky Blue Cheese Spread:
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/4 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1 clove garlic, pressed or finely minced
1/4 cup crumbled blue cheese (you can substitute the blue cheese with feta)

Crispy Shoestring Onions:
3 ounces onion, thinly sliced (1/2 large onion)
1 egg
1 tablespoon milk
1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
Vegetable oil for frying

Burgers:
1 1/2 pounds high-quality 85/15 ground Angus
1/2 cup BBQ sauce (or your favorite bottled BBQ sauce)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper

8-10 small white dinner rolls, or Hawaiian sweet rolls, sliced in half and toasted if desired
8-10 crisp lettuce leaves
8-10 slices bacon, cooked crisp

Directions

Kansas City Barbecue Sauce:

In a medium saucepan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add the chopped onion and garlic, stirring frequently, until the onions are translucent. Add the remaining ingredients except horseradish and bring to a simmer, stirring frequently. Turn heat to low, cover, and cook for 30 minutes or until the sauce reaches the desired consistency. Add the horseradish and serve as desired. This can be made up to two weeks before serving.

Garlicky Blue Cheese Spread:
Whisk ingredients together in a small bowl. This can be made up to 3 days ahead of time.

Crispy Shoestring Onions:
Heat 2 inches of oil to 350 degrees. Make sure to use a pot with sides (as opposed to a skillet style pan) so the oil doesn’t boil over when you add the onions. Working with a handful of onions at a time, dip in egg mixture and let excess drip off. Then dredge in flour and lightly toss to coat. Place onions in hot oil and cook until golden brown. Remove and place on folded paper towels to absorb oil. Repeat process until all onions are fried.

Burgers: Heat a grill pan on the stove top, or an outdoor grill to medium-high heat. Combine beef, 2 tablespoons barbecue sauce, salt and pepper. Divide and shape mixture into 8-10 3/4″-thick patties (keep the size of your buns in mind as wells the fact that the burgers will shrink quite a bit while cooking when shaping the patties). Make a small indentation with your thumb in the middle of each burger to prevent them from “bunching” up in the middle like a meatball.

Grill for 2-3 minutes and then flip. Brush the top side of each burger with remaining sauce. Continue grilling for another 2 minutes and flip burgers again, brushing the other side with additional sauce. Continue to cook and baste until the internal temperature of the burgers reach 160-165 degrees.

To assemble: Lightly spread the bottom half of each bun with Garlicky Blue Cheese Spread and top with a lettuce leaf. Break each bacon piece in half and place on top of lettuce leaves. Place burger on top and drizzle with additional barbecue sauce if desired. Top with a small handful of Crispy Shoestring Onions. Spread remaining Garlicky Blue Cheese Spread on top halves of buns.

 

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