- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), divided
- 6 fingerling potatoes, thinly sliced
- 2 small or 1 medium carrot, chopped
- 2 small ribs celery, from the heart, chopped
- 1 small yellow onion, chopped
- 1 bay leaf, fresh or dried
- A few sprigs fresh thyme, leaves chopped
- Salt and pepper
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 2 tablespoons butter, plus more for spreading
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 2 cups beef stock
- 2 pounds coarse ground beef sirloin (ask your butcher, if available)
- 2/3 cup flat leaf parsley, finley chopped (about 2 handfuls)
- 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce (eyeball it)
- 2 sandwich-size sourdough English muffins, split
- Extra-sharp aged white cheddar crumbles, for topping (optional)
- Chopped chives, for garnish (optional)
In a large saucepan, heat 1 1/2 tablespoons EVOO over medium heat. Add the potatoes, carrot, celery, onion, bay leaf and thyme as you chop them. Season with salt and pepper; cover and cook for 10 minutes. Stir in the tomato paste, 1 minute. Make a well in the center of the vegetables, add the butter and cook until melted. Add the flour, stirring for 1 minute. Add the stock, bring to a simmer and cook until the potatoes are tender, 5 minutes. Discard the bay leaf.
In a large bowl, mix the beef with the parsley and Worcestershire sauce; season with salt and pepper. Form four patties, making them thinner at the centers for even cooking. In a large nonstick skillet, heat the remaining 1/2 tablespoon EVOO over medium-high heat. Cook the patties, turning once, for 8 minutes for medium-rare, a minute less for rare or 2 minutes more for well done.
While the burgers are cooking, toast and butter the English muffins.
On each of four plates, place a muffin half; top each with a patty and spoon some stew on top. Top with the cheese and chives.