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Playing Brunch Burgers


  • 12 slices peppered bacon
  • 1/2 cup (packed) dark brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons pure maple syrup, divided
  • 3/4 pound ground beef
  • 3/4 pound ground pork
  • 1 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1 teaspoon granulated garlic
  • 1 teaspoon granulated onion
  • 1 teaspoon ground sage
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon canola or vegetable oil
  • 4 thick slices sharp cheddar or Cooper Sharp American cheese
  • 4 medium eggs
  • 3 tablespoons soft butter
  • 1 tablespoon whole-grain mustard
  • 4 sandwich-size English muffins, toasted


Serves: 4


Arrange a rack in the center of the oven; preheat to 375°F. Set a wire rack inside a rimmed baking sheet lined with foil. Place the bacon slices on a cutting board. In a small bowl, mix together the brown sugar and 2 tablespoons maple syrup. Press the brown sugar mixture onto 1 side of the bacon. Transfer the bacon to the wire rack, brown-sugar side up. Bake until crispy, about 30 minutes. 

In a medium bowl, combine the ground beef, ground pork and seasonings. Form into 4 patties, making each one thinner at the center and thicker at the edges for even cooking. 
In a skillet or griddle pan, heat the oil over medium-high. Cook the patties, turning once, 8-10 minutes for medium. Top each patty with 1 slice of cheese during the last minute or two of cooking. Transfer the patties to a plate then cook the eggs over-easy. 

In a small bowl, mix the butter, 1 tablespoon maple syrup and mustard. Spread the maple-mustard butter on the English muffins. 

Divide the patties among the muffin bottoms. Top with the bacon, eggs and muffin tops.