For compote: Peel and chop onions. Saute in butter until lightly browned. Sprinkle with sugar and caramelize slightly. Deglaze with balsamic vinegar. Let the vinegar evaporate completely and simmer 20 minutes, adding water when necessary and stirring constantly. The mixture should reduce to a sort of onion jam.
Put it all together: Form four meat patties, season with salt and cook in a hot pan over high heat for three minutes on each side for rare. When you have turned the patties, place a slice of cheese on each.
Toast split buns two minutes under the broiler. Spread both sides with the honey vinaigrette sauce.
Place cheeseburgers on bun half, top with hot caramelized onion compote and other half of bun. Serves 4.
HONEY VINAIGRETTE SAUCE
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon mustard
1/2 tablespoon honey
Salt and pepper
Pour olive oil and vinegar in a bowl. Add honey and mustard, plus a pinch of pepper and salt. Mix thoroughly with a fork or whisk for five minutes, or until vinaigrette is blended.
PARIS NEW YORK HONEY-APPLE CHEESEBURGER
4 hamburger buns, split (Martin's Potato Rolls recommended)
1 pound ground chuck
4 generous slices Comte cheese
1 handful mesclun
1 Royal Gala apple
1/4 cup chopped red onion
1 tablespoon honey
2 teaspoons butter
4 teaspoons whole-grain mustard
Salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Wash and cut the apple into four wedges, without peeling. Core and cut each wedge into three slices.
Heat 1 teaspoon butter in a frying pan until it begins to simmer. Add the red onion and brown gently. Add apple slices and honey. Cook one minute; apple slices should be slightly crunchy.
Split meat into four patties. Cook burgers on a grill outdoors or on the stove in a frying pan. Stop cooking one minute before burgers reach your preferred doneness. Season with salt and pepper and top with a slice of cheese.
Bake burgers briefly in the oven until cheese is melted. Meanwhile, split and toast the eight semi-buns on both sides in the remaining butter in a frying pan.
Place toasted buns on plate and place mesclun on the bottom half of each hamburger bun. Add the cheeseburgers and top with a tablespoon of honey apples. Spread mustard over the top half of each bun, put it all together and enjoy. Serves 4.