Snappin’ Flamenco Pork Burgers with Pecan-Romesco Mayo
1 medium red bell pepper
2/3 cup mayonnaise
1/3 cup pecans, finely chopped
1 large clove garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon smoked Spanish paprika
2 lbs. boneless pork tenderloins, trimmed of silver skin
1/2 cup crisp gingersnap cookies, finely crushed
1/4 cup red onion, finely diced
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon coarse salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
6 very thin slices Manchego cheese
6 large artisanal rolls, split
6 large, curly red lettuce leaves
Preheat a gas grill to medium-high.
To make the Pecan-Romesco Mayo: Cut the bell pepper in half; remove the seeds and stem. Place the pepper halves skin-side down on the grill rack and cook 4-6 minutes. Remove pepper halves to a medium glass bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and steam for 10 minutes. Remove the skin from the peppers using a pairing knife. Finely dice the peppers and combine them with the mayonnaise, pecans, garlic, and smoked paprika in a medium bowl. Cover and chill until ready to serve.
To make the patties: Cut the tenderloins into 2-inch cubes. Place the cubes into a large food processor and pulse until well minced. Place the minced pork, crushed gingersnaps, red onion, egg, salt, and black pepper into a large bowl. Handling the meat as little as possible to avoid compacting it, mix well. Divide the mixture into 6 equal portions and form the portions into patties that will fit the artisanal rolls (the patties won’t shrink much when cooking).
Brush the grill rack with vegetable oil. Place the patties on the grill rack, cover, and cook for 4-5 minutes. Turn the patties and cook until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center of the patties registers 160 degrees F, about 4 minutes more. During the last few minutes of cooking, place one slice of Manchego cheese on top of each patty, and place rolls, cut-side down, along the outer edges of the grill rack to toast lightly.
To assemble the burgers: Spread an equal amount of Pecan-Romesco Mayo onto the cut side of each toasted roll top. Place one Manchego-topped patty onto each roll bottom, and top with one curly red lettuce leaf. Add the roll tops and serve.
Makes 6 burgers.