Cookbook cover for Wicked Good Burgers


Andy Husbands, Andrea Pyenson, Chris Hart

April 2013
$22.99/Trade Paperback
ISBN-13: 978-1592335589

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ANDY HUSBANDS, the award-winning chef/owner of Tremont 647, in Boston, has been enticing patrons with his adventurous American cuisine at the South End neighborhood restaurant and bar for well over a decade.  A James Beard “Best Chef” semi-finalist, Andy competed in the sixth season of Fox television network’s Hells Kitchen with Gordon Ramsay.  When he’s not in the kitchen or working with his favorite charities, Andy is on the BBQ circuit with his award-winning team, iQUE.

CHRIS HART, winner of the Jack Daniels Invitational World Championship in 2009, has dominated the competition BBQ circuit for the past ten years with his team, iQUE.  The team was the first group of northerners in barbeque history to win a Word Championship.  Chis spends his days developing software, but his passion for cooking barbeque has him following the competition BBQ trail on weekend, pitting his talents against the best pitmasters in the U.S. In 2012, Chris cooked an elaborate barbeque tasting menu at the James Beard House in New York City.  In 2011, he competed in Food Network’s inaugural season of Best in Smoke.

ANDREA PYENSON, has been writing about food for more than a decade and enjoying it for a lot longer than that. Her writing about food and travel has appeared in various publications, including the Boston Globeedible Boston, edible Cape Cod,,, Washington Post, and Fine Cooking.

We won’t lie. Making a decent burger is pretty easy.  But the devil is in the details when making a “wicked good” burger, the kind of burger that hits the sweet spot of juiciness, has a perfectly seared crust, and mouthwatering flavors. Before award-winning chefs Andy Husbands and Chris Hart–two regular guys from Boston–turned the world of barbecue on its burnt ends by winning the Jack Daniels World Championship Invitational Barbecue and racking up thirty Kansas City Barbecue Society championships, they became masters of meat by cooking burgers–lots of ‘em. And they got damn good at it, thank you very much! Inside WICKED GOOD BURGERS they reveal their secrets for mouthwateringly good burgers, including techniques for grinding your own meat and cooking it to juicy perfection as well as recipes for killer toppings, side dishes, and burger accompaniments. With their trademark fearless approach, Husbands and Hart bring excitement and edginess to all things between the bun.

Tortilla-Wrapped New Mexican Chile Burger

Don’t knock it ‘til you’ve tried it. The first time we served this burger at a party, the jokes were flying. A burger in a bun, wrapped in a tortilla? “The Carb Burger,” people called it. Then they started eating, and nobody was joking any more. We’re not recommending that you eat like this every day. All we can say is, it’s even better than it looks. And if you have any relish left over, enjoy it with your morning eggs.

Make the green chile relish: In a small bowl, mix together the New Mexican chiles, red onion, cilantro, lime juice, olive oil, garlic, and red pepper flakes. Season with salt and pepper.

Set aside until the burgers are ready.

Green Chile Relish
2 New Mexican green chiles (or poblano chiles), roasted, peeled, seeded, stemmed, and roughly chopped
1⁄4 medium red onion, diced
1 tablespoon (1 g) chopped fresh cilantro
11⁄2 teaspoons (7.5 ml) fresh lime juice
3⁄4 teaspoon (4 ml) extra-virgin olive oil
1⁄2 clove garlic, peeled and minced
1⁄2 teaspoon (0.6 g) red pepper flakes
Kosher salt and fresh cracked black pepper, to taste

1 1⁄2 pounds (680 g) ground chuck, or chuck for grinding
1 teaspoon (2.1 g) cumin seeds, toasted and ground
2 tablespoons (13 g) New Mexico Chile Ground (see Resources, page 201)
Kosher salt and fresh cracked black pepper,to taste
Oil for frying
8 slices pepper Jack cheese or your favorite cheese
4 burger buns, toasted
4 twelve-inch (30 cm) flour tortillas
1 egg mixed with 1 tablespoon (15 ml)
water, for tortilla wraps

Make the burgers: If you are grinding the meat, mix the chuck with the cumin and chili powder and grind according to the technique in chapter 1 (page 15). If you have ground meat, add the spices and mix thoroughly. Shape the burgers according to the technique in chapter 1 (see page 17).

Heat a skillet over high heat until very hot. If you have an infrared thermometer, the skillet should register at least 500°F (250°C). Or test by brushing on a bit of oil. When the skillet starts to smoke, it is ready.

Brush oil onto the skillet and sear the burgers for 2 minutes per side. Skip the resting step. Instead, remove the burgers from the heat and transfer to a sheet pan. Quickly spread about 2 tablespoons (30 g) of Green Chile Relish on each one and quickly top with 2 slices of cheese. Let the burgers rest on the pan for a minute so the cheese sets. Fill a saucepan (or Windsor pan) with 4 inches (10 cm) of oil and heat to 350°F (180°C, gas mark 4).

While the oil is heating, wrap the burgers. Place each burger in a bun. One at a time, invert the burger, in its bun, onto the center of a tortilla and wrap the tortilla around it, making overlapping folds and using egg wash to hold down each fold. The result should look something like a pentagon.

Place burgers in the pan, fold side down. Fry for about 2 minutes per side until the tortillas are evenly browned and crispy. Serve immediately with green chile relish.



Yield: 3 1⁄2 cups (800 g)

Hands down, this is one of our favorite items to spread on a burger or to dip our fries in. Technically, the addition of garlic powder makes it an aioli because the simplest definition of aioli is a garlic mayonnaise. But we don’t want to get hung up on semantics. We think this is the best mayo ever. And when you see how easy it is to make, you may never purchase the jarred stuff again.

In the bowl of a stand mixer with the whisk attachment, mix the egg yolks, mustard, vinegar, and Worcestershire sauce on medium-high speed for 2 minutes until light and fully incorporated. Very slowly stream in the oil to make the emulsion. You will see the mixture will start to thicken and become increasingly pale. Continue pouring the oil in slowly until it is thick like mayonnaise in a jar, about 4 minutes. Turn the mixer off and add the two salts and garlic powder. Mix on medium high for 1 minute more. Remove from the bowl and refrigerate until needed, up to 1 week.

2 egg yolks
1 teaspoon (5 g) Dijon mustard
3 tablespoons (45 ml) white vinegar
1⁄2 teaspoon (2.5 ml) Worcestershire sauce
3 cups (700 ml) canola or vegetable oil
1⁄2 teaspoon (2.5 g) kosher salt
1 teaspoon (5 g) large, thin-flaked sea salt,
such as Maldon sea salt
1 teaspoon (3 g) garlic powder


These Recipes may be reproduced with the following credit:

Recipes from Wicked Good Burgers by Andy Husbands, Andrea Pyenson, Chris Hart. (Fair Winds Press; April 2013; $22.99/Trade Paperback: ISBN-13: 978-1592335589.

Contact: Dalyn Miller