Cuz's Fish Burger with Bajan Mayo

By Marcus Samuelsson |

I’ve been obsessed with burgers since my first visit to the United States, and I look for them everywhere. This one, a fish burger with cheese and egg, is my current favorite. Every time I make it, I’m transported back to Barbados – to Cuz’s stand in the parking lot between my hotel and the beach where I first had this. There was a line out the door, as people waited while the guy griddled his daily catch and slapped the fillets onto a bun with a piece of a cheese and an egg. So fresh. So delicious. I took my fish burger out to the beach and ate it there. And went back the next day for another.

Prep Details

Servings: 4



1 large egg yolk

½ tsp kosher salt

½ tsp Colman’s dry mustard

2 pinches sugar

1 tbsp white wine vinegar

2 tsp fresh lemon juice

1 tsp Tabasco or other hot sauce

1 cup olive oil


1 tbsp soy sauce

1 tsp honey

¼ tsp wasabi paste

4 drops sesame oil

4 dashes Tabasco or other hot sauce


4 (4 ounce) skinless fish fillets(halibut, mahimahi, swordfish, and snapper are all good choices)

Kosher saltand freshly ground black pepper

2 tbsp vegetable oil

4 sesame buns

4 slices cheddar cheese

1 tomato,thinly sliced

4 slices red onion

4 romaine lettuce leaves

About ¼ cup pickled cabbage

4 large eggs, prepared over easy


Photo by Paul Brissman


Whisk the egg yolk, salt, mustard, and sugar together in a glass bowl. Combine the vinegar, lemon juice, and Tabasco in a measuring cup.

Whisk half the liquid into the yolk. Then begin whisking in the oil, a few drops at a time, until the mayo begins to emulsify. Continue whisking in the oil- you can add it more quickly now - until the mayo is very thick. Add the rest of the liquid and whisk until well combined. Cover and refrigerate. It will keep for about 1 week.


Stir all the ingredients together in a small bowl.


Heat the cast iron skillet or grill pan over high heat.

Season the fish on both sides with salt and pepper. Spoon the vegetable oil into the hot pan. Add the fish, brush the top with the glaze, and sear for 3 minutes. Turn the fish over, paint it with glaze, and sear until the fish feels firm when you prod it, about 3 minutes.

To assemble the burgers, spread a thin layer of the Bajan mayo on both sides of the sesame buns. To each, add a cooked filet, a slice of cheddar cheese, a piece of tomato, a slice of onion, a lettuce leaf, and a tablespoon or so of the pickled cabbage. Top with an over-easy egg.