Dominican Chimi Burger
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Dominican Chimi Burger

A street food staple, perfect for grilling up on a nice summer afternoon or after a late night out.

May 28, 2024

by: Franchesca Livraghi | @breakthrukitchen

When I was growing up, my cousins would always tell stories about how the best way to end a night out in the Dominican Republic was with a Chimi burger from the Chimi truck. Growing up in the States, I never got to experience classic Dominican street food as often as my family who lived there most of their lives.

And even though I don’t have access to an authentic Chimi truck, that definitely doesn’t stop me from creating some of my own memories in my very own kitchen and sharing these nostalgic foods with the special people in my life.

Dominican Chimi Burger

What makes Dominican Chimi Burgers different from regular burgers?

A Chimi may fall into the burger category, but it’s nothing like the cheeseburgers we’re all familiar with. The Chimi burger patties are made with fresh ingredients and utilizes classic Latin seasonings to create that sabor we know and love. And in this recipe, Loisa’s Sofrito Rojo brings in rich flavor from the tomato, capers, and olives it’s made with!

Even though these Dominican burgers are far from plain and simple, they still manage to be refreshing and satisfying without being overly filling. And I think it’s because they are made with no cheese - just fresh toppings like juicy sliced tomatoes, finely shredded cabbage, and crunchy red onions. And of course, a generous drizzle of Chimi sauce! Un Chimi Dominicano is simply not a Chimi without the Chimi sauce.

What is Chimi sauce?

Chimi sauce is similar to pink sauce or mayoketchup, but it typically includes a few extra ingredients that take it to the next level. It begins with the basic mix of mayonnaise and ketchup, just like traditional mayoketchup. Adding a bit of worcestershire sauce and orange juice to the mix is all you’ll need to elevate your mayoketchup and create an irresistible salsa for your Chimi burger!

Dominican Chimi Burger toppings

What kind of bread do you need for a Dominican Chimi Burger?

A round kaiser bread roll works great, but you can use any soft round roll you prefer. If you can find it, then Dominican pan de agua is a great traditional option for Chimi burgers. They tend to be longer in shape, so you’ll need to shape your burger patty to match the size of whatever bread you choose.

What's the best way to cook a Dominican Chimi Burger?

Using a grill or grill pan to make these Chimis helps create a delicious char on the burgers that is simply irresistible. And to make these even better, grill them over a charcoal grill so the burgers can get infused with that smokey taste you can only get from a natural grill!

Dominican Chimi Burger toppings

There's something magical about the way these burgers soak up the flavors when cooked over charcoal. You know when the air is thick with the scent of a grill or barbecue on a scorching summer day? Trust me, you want that inviting aroma coming from your backyard this year!

Recipe Tips and Tricks

  • A good Chimi has very thinly shredded cabbage. To get the cabbage shredded super fine, use a vegetable peeler and shred the cabbage back and forth. If you use a knife, even if you try to chop the cabbage as thin as possible, it will still be too thick and become soggy instead of crisp and crunchy.
  • Shape the burger patties roughly the same size as the size of your bread roll, or slightly larger since the patties will shrink a bit while cooking. This doesn’t need to be perfect, but is an important step to keeping the Chimi burger proportional.
  • For a stronger flavor in the burger patties, let the beef marinate in the Sofrito Rojo, soy sauce, worcestershire sauce, and seasonings for a few hours. You can even set these aside overnight for maximum flavor, and to make the prep super quick and easy on the day you plan to cook these.
Dominican Chimi Burger sliced lengthwise