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Sandwiches New York Times
Beef 5/7/1998


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Servings: 8 hamburger

This is the kind of thing you'd like to eat just any time, but it is a little fussy to make.


Herb Butter
1 to 3 tablespoons canned chipotle chili peppers, depending on desired piquancy, minced
teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons unsalted butter

Gorditas (corn cakes)
1 cup masa harina, plus more for rolling
1 tablespoon corn oil, plus more for frying
teaspoon baking powder
teaspoon salt
cup water

cup tomatillos, peeled and chopped
cup tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped
2 tablespoons red onions, chopped
1 teaspoon peanut oil
teaspoon salt
2 avocados, pitted and peeled and thinly sliced, for garnish

2-2/3 pounds ground sirloin


Herb Butter
In a small bowl, mash the chilies, salt and butter with a fork until smooth. Place the butter on plastic wrap and loosely fold the wrap over it. Roll into a log and harden in the freezer for at least 30 minutes.

Combine the masa flour, 1 tablespoon corn oil, baking powder, salt and 3/4 cup water in a bowl. With a fork, stir until smooth and then make 8 equal-size balls. Spread some masa flour on a board, place a ball of dough on it and roll to a diameter of 4 inches. Repeat with the remaining balls. Brush a large skillet or griddle with corn oil. Cook the gorditas over medium-low heat 7 minutes. Brush the tops of the gorditas with oil, turn, and cook another 7 minutes.

Combine the tomatillos, tomatoes, onion, oil, and teaspoon salt in a nonreactive bowl.

Remove butter from the plastic wrap and cut into 8 cylinders. Divide the meat into 8 equal balls. With each ball, make an indentation with your thumb, press a butter cylinder in and close the meat over the butter. Shape each ball into a 1-inch-thick patty and sprinkle with salt and pepper on both sides. Cook in a cast-iron skillet over medium heat, 4 to 6 minutes per side.

To Assemble
Place each patty on top of a gordita and top with 4 or 5 slices of avocado and 1 to 2 tablespoons of salad. Serve.

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