Sometimes, I get a craving for something specific and most of the time, I can’t get the authentic thing here in Marbella. Today it’s a hamburger with lots of toppings (cheese, bacon, pickles) and crispy sides (onion rings and thin fries). It must be because I’ve been reading about the burger invasion going on not only in the U.S. (Laurent Tourondel’s successful blt burger and those infamous sliders) but in Paris as well. It seems that the humble burger has suddenly become fashionable and with top ingredients like Kobe beef and grass-fed USDA prime beef ground up for these jaw breaking sandwiches, the gourmet burger has been born.
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp. coarse salt
- Cayenne pepper
- 3/4 cup buttermilk
- 3/4 cup beer
- 1 large egg
- 1 tsp. finely-grated lemon zest
- Vegetable oil for frying (about 4 cups) (* I use mild-flavoured olive oil)
- 2 large white onions, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch thick slices, separated into rings
- sea salt, preferably Maldon
- 1 lemon, cut into wedges, for serving
- Combine the flour, salt and a pinch of cayenne in a medium bowl. Whisk in buttermilk, beer, egg and lemon zest. Let stand for 20 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 200F. Place a baking sheet on middle rack of oven. Heat oil to 380F in a large, heavy saucepan over medium-high heat. Dip a few slices of onion in batter, turning to coat. Gently drop slices in oil. Cook, turning until golden brown, about 2 minutes.
- Transfer rings to paper towels, season with salt immediately, then transfer onions to the baking sheet to keep warm. Repeat, with remaining onions. (Adjust heat as necessary to keep oil at a steady temperature).
- Serve with lemon wedges for squeezing.