Chef's Recipes

Lotus burger

Australian Gourmet Traveller recipe for Lotus burger by Dan Hong.

By Dan Hong
  • 40 mins preparation
  • 1 hr cooking plus chilling
  • Serves 5
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Lotus burger


  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 10 slices smoked speck (about 10cm long)
  • 5 soft sesame seed hamburger buns (about 12cm in diameter), split
  • 2 tbsp Japanese mayonnaise (Kenko brand)
  • 3 large dill pickles, sliced on a mandolin into 2mm-thick slices
  • 5 slices American-style cheddar
  • To serve: Heinz tomato ketchup
Meat patties
  • 400 gm grain-fed beef brisket, top layer of fat removed
  • 400 gm grain-fed beef chuck, trimmed of excess fat
  • 200 gm dry aged beef fat (see note)
Caramelised onions
  • 50 gm unsalted butter
  • 3 large onions, thinly sliced
  • 1 tbsp brown miso


  • 1
    For meat patties, chop meat and fat into long pieces that will fit inside your mincer and place in a bowl in the freezer until starting to firm up (1 hour). This prevents the meat and fat overheating and melting when going through the mincer.
  • 2
    Feed the meat through the mincer, alternating pieces of brisket, chuck and fat. Once minced, place return mix to the fridge to firm up for 1 hour, then divide into five 200gm portions. Flatten each evenly with your hands; moisten your hands with a little oil for this. Ensure each patty is about 1cm wider all round than your buns because they will shrink when cooked. Refrigerate patties until required.
  • 3
    For caramelised onions, melt butter in a shallow saucepan over medium-low heat, add onions and a pinch of salt, and cook gently, stirring, until dark brown, softened, and caramelised (40-50 minutes); scrape the caramelised bits from the bottom of the pan during cooking, especially near the end. Once onions are totally cooked down, mix in miso paste, transfer to a container and keep warm. Makes 200gm.
  • 4
    Preheat oven to 180C. Heat a char-grill pan over high heat and heat a bamboo steamer if you are going to steam the buns. Heat a large ovenproof frying pan over medium-high heat, add vegetable oil and when it starts to smoke, season patties with salt and fry for 2 minutes until they have developed a nice brown crust, then flip patties and top each with a slice of cheese and put the pan in the oven. Cook for a further 2 minutes for medium-rare or to your liking.
  • 5
    While patties are in the oven, grill the bacon on the char-grill pan on both sides until nicely charred (2-3 minutes per side).
  • 6
    Meanwhile, steam hamburger buns just until soft, or toast under a hot grill (30 seconds).
  • 7
    Place ½ tbsp of Japanese mayonnaise on the base of each bun, smoothing out with a spoon to cover all areas. Follow with 1 tbsp of caramelised onions and spread out. Top with a patty with cheese, then place 2 slices bacon on top side by side. Place a layer of pickles on top, covering the patty, then, using a squeezy bottle filled with ketchup, top the patty with ketchup starting from the centre and working outwards in a spiral. Finish by placing the bun tops on and serve.


Note Aged beef fat is available from select butchers.