Green Chorizo Bison Burgers for Earth Day

It doesn't have to be Earth Day to eat sustainably, but it's certainly a good day to be reminded to. Bison can be an especially sustainable alternative to the beef you buy at the store. Federal law prohibits artificial growth hormones when it comes to bison. The species is also more capable of staying healthy on their own so few antibiotics are used in their farming. They also don't have nearly the environmental footprint of a cow, eating much less and treading more lightly. Those of you who harvest your own meat are likely thinking, "Hey, my wild bison / venison / elk is just as sustainable as farmed bison!" We agree and that's why we're thrilled that this recipe will be just as delicious using your harvested meat. 

makes four ¼ lb. patties

- Ingredients - 

1 lb bison, cubed
½ cup fresh cilantro
½ cup fresh curley parsley
¼ cup fresh spinach
2 serrano peppers
5 sprigs fresh oregano, stems removed
1 garlic clove, smashed

1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon coarse black pepper

Sweet Potato Hash
1 sweet potato
½ teaspoon coriander
½ teaspoon cumin
½ cloves
½ teaspoon pepper
⅛ teaspoon salt

For Serving
12 oz queso fresco

- Tools -
Weston Smoker and wood chips
Weston Kitchen Chopper
Weston Meat Grinder
Weston Burger Press and Patty Paper
Weston French Fry Cutter & Vegetable Dicer
Weston Deep Fryer and oil

Step One | Preheat Smoker
Preheat your Smoker to 200ºF. Fill the water bowl and soak your wood chips. 

Step Two | Grind Bison Meat
Use a Chopper to roughly chop together the spinach, herbs and garlic. 

Chopped spinach, parsley, oregano, cilantro, serranos & garlic

Use a Meat Grinder to grind together the burger ingredients through a coarse (7mm) plate (leave out the salt & pepper). 

One of the many benefits to grinding you're own meat is being able to grind fresh herbs right into the ground meat
Once the ingredients have been ground together, sprinkle in the salt and pepper. 

The finished product: freshly ground bison peppered with greenery

Step Three | Form Burger Patties
Form the ground bison into patties using a Burger Press.

This will press the meat together tightly and ensure that the patties don't fall apart in the smoker. If you're still worried that they will, you can freeze them overnight or use foil, poked with holes, on the racks. 

Step Four | Smoke Burgers
Place the patties onto the racks of your smoker and smoke at 200ºF for 30 minutes, or until the internal temperature reaches your preference. 

A smoked burger is where it's at.
We love a good 140º medium rare burger, so we pulled the burgers at 135. Remember to account for resting time - you'll probably want to cook the burgers to 5º less than your final temperature. 

Step Five | Prepare Sweet Potato Hash
While the burgers are smoking, make your sweet potato hash. Preheat the oil to 375ºF. Quickly cube the Sweet Potato using the French Fry Cutter.

We wrap our sweet potatoes in a wet paper towel or cloth and microwave them for 45 seconds before putting them through the cutter. 
Deep fry for 5 minutes, tossing occasionally, or until the cubes begin to brown lightly. Remove from the fryer basket and immediately toss with the seasonings.  

Golden brown sweet potato hashbrowns, fresh from the fryer

Step Six | Assemble in the Smoker
While the burgers are still in smoker and have about 5 minutes left, pile the sweet potato hash onto the tops of the burgers, then crumble the queso fresco on top of that. This will keep the hash hot and melt the cheese.

Carefully remove the patties and serve on buns or wrap in tortillas. Condiments are up to you. These are very flavorful, juicy burgers, so we ate ours without anything else. Sour cream, mayonnaise, hot sauce and any combination of those will all be good accompaniments if you so choose. 

Sample Product Label
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