Being that I didn’t grow up a Midwesterner, pork burgers weren’t something I was ever exposed to. I know, my Iowa friends are thinking I am crazy! My first attempt at pork burgers was during my first ever Thirty Days of Food where I made sour apple pork burgers. They were delicious, but highly involved. I decided to try a more classic, everyday pork burger. And to go along with this pork burger feature, I have another Iowa pork producer: Janae Mogler of Pig Hill Farms!
Who farms with you and what are their roles?
I farm with my grandfather, two uncles, my father, and two first cousins. Grandpa oversees his cattle operation, my uncle Brian oversees operations at our grainery, Rodney is the agronomy and construction supervisor, my father Dwight supervises the pigs after 30 days of age, cousin Ross is in charge of operations and a team of employees, my cousin Chet and I manage the sow farm and a team of employees where the pigs we raise are born.
What has been the hardest part of farming for you?
Farming is a commitment. There are tough financial years, health issues with animals, and mother nature sometimes does not cooperate all the time. However, there are very good times as well and when you are committed, you know better times will come.
What has been the most satisfying part of farming for you?
The most satisfying part of farming is seeing the fruits of your labors. Whether it is seeing the animal that you have raise from little up or harvesting the crops you planted in the spring or even seeing your employees develop a passion for the animals, farming is very rewarding.
What is one thing you’d like to get across to the general public about what you do?
I want the public to know how much I care about the animals and crops we raise. I also share the same concerns as them. I want to be comfortable with the food I eat and feed my family. I also am raising food for the world! It is fulfilling to know what I do today will allow someone in a foreign country to enjoy a delicious and healthy meal of pork.
What is your favorite thing to do with the food crop you grow?
I love to grill pork! Chops, tenderloin, pork loin, ribs, you name it. However, bacon goes great with everything: eggs, veggies, wrapped around a piece of meat and more!
We grilled these pork burgers, as it is how we like burgers best. But you could also pan fry them and they would be lovely! I served my burgers with mustard on top and a slice of white cheese like farmer’s, jack, or white cheddar.
- 1/2 pound bacon
- 1 medium onion
- 2 pounds ground pork
- 3/4 cup breadcrumbs
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 tablespoon season salt
- pepper to taste
- Place the bacon and onion in a food processor and pulse until minced. Set aside.
- In a large bowl add the ground pork, breadcrumbs, egg, dijon mustard, and seasonings. Add the minced bacon and onion. Mix well.
- Form six to eight burgers. Preheat grill, once hot grill burgers until they reach an internal temperature of 160 degrees. Top with cheese and enjoy!