Vote The Norm for Best Blended Burger

The Norm's blended burger for the 2017 JBF Blended Burger competition

The Norm's blended burger for the 2017 JBF Blended Burger competition

What's more exciting than a burger? A blended burger! The James Beard Foundation's Blended Burger Project features burgers packed with the flavors of earthy, smoky mushrooms.

This year The Norm's contender has 75 percent Pat LaFrieda beef and 25 percent shiitake mushrooms. It's grilled and glazed with homemade teriyaki sauce, grilled red onions, kewpie mayo, ripe tomato, and pickled cabbage and daikon slaw on a toasted sesame seed bun. 

The goal of the project is to cut back on meat usage by blending mushrooms and meat, creating a tasty package that's better for you and the planet. Each patty must have 25 percent fresh mushrooms in the mix.

Contenders from all over the nation are chopping mushrooms in hopes of earning a spot at the James Beard House in January 2018, where the top five chefs will showcase their burgers. 

If you vote, you'll be entered to receive an all-expenses paid trip and a pass for two to the event at the James Beard House in January.

Don't forget to come in and try our tasty new burger, and vote for The Norm here by July 31.

Just in time for lightening things up this summer: The Norm's blended burger recipe, part of the James Beard Foundation's Blended Burger Project. Cut back on meat and enjoy this tasty burger for your 4th of July BBQ.

Recipe: The Norman Burger's Blended Brother

by Chef Saul Bolton

Burger Blend (serves 8):

3 lbs chopped beef

2 lbs button mushrooms, cleaned

Optional glaze: 3/4 C store-bought (or homemade) teriyaki sauce, seasoned with 1t fresh ginger and 1t fresh garlic

Preheat oven to 350F.  

Toss mushrooms in 4T olive oil, season lightly with salt and pepper. Place the mushrooms on a cookie tray and bake until the mushrooms have lost about 50% of their water content. Remove mushrooms from the oven and cool. 

Once the mushrooms have cooled, process in a robot coupe until coarsely chopped. The idea is to come as close to the grind size of the chopped beef.  

Combine the beef and mushrooms in a bowl and gently but completely combine. Now divide the mix into 8 equal balls and form into nice patties. Do not overwork the meat, but make the patties uniform and not crumbly.

Season with salt and pepper and teriyaki glaze if using. Preheat grill and cook to desired temperature. 

Serve on lightly grilled sesame buns. Garnish as desired. Chef Saul's version uses homemade pineapple ketchup, pickled daikon radishes, red onions tossed in teriyaki, ripe tomato, Little Gem lettuce and kewpie mayo.