The Bahadur is a Pakistani-style smashburger with two patties and a...

The Bahadur is a Pakistani-style smashburger with two patties and a spicy sauce. Credit: Newsday/Andi Berlin

Burgers are an international cuisine these days, as chefs have realized that a simple ground meat patty will sing with flavors from across the world. Thai burgers with shrimp sauce and basil, Dominican burgers topped with chopped cabbage ...

And now we've got a new obsession: the Pakistani smashburger.

This saucy creation was dreamt up by a halal fast-food restaurant in Elmont. Formerly a Chinese takeout, Amir's is the product of chef Suqlain Abbas and his father, Amir Raza, the joint's namesake. Suqlain opened the spot in August with his brother, Zaki Sajjad, as manager. Fast-food style chicken and kebab sandwiches are popular street foods in their native Pakistan, but this smashburger is a new invention.

The Bahadur ($9.99), which translates to "a brave person" in the Pakistani Urdu language, is definitely not afraid of punchy sauces and melted cheese. Two 3-ounce beef patties, smashed thin, are loaded up with pepper jack cheese and a "secret recipe" spicy cayenne pepper pink sauce,  then finished with whisper-thin jalapeño.

The ground beef patties are laced with a fervent spice blend and minced together with chopped onions, recalling the famous Pakistani chapli kebab, which is also flat but often eaten with naan bread. The Bahadur was so loosely packed and oily that it required us to take a fork to it. But the flavor combo was explosively good. And that keenness carried over to the other items on the menu, like the Zinger chicken sandwich ($8.99).

The Zinger chicken sandwich at Amir's in Elmont is made...

The Zinger chicken sandwich at Amir's in Elmont is made in the style of the famous KFC sandwich. Credit: Newsday/Andi Berlin

An icon of the halal fast-food joint, a Zinger is a spicy fried chicken sandwich developed by an international fast-food behemoth, KFC. The sandwich came to Pakistan's largest city, Karachi, in the '90s and was quickly co-opted by a throng of independently owned chicken sandwich spots. It's also a hallmark of the halal shops on Long Island, and Amir's is  among the best we've had. Also loaded up with sauce, the Zinger features a juicy fried chicken breast that packs a spicy crunch. There's not much else to it, besides a sheaf of crisp lettuce and a pillowy  brioche bun.

Amir’s also makes a Pakistani street food called a shami burger ($9.99), which consists of a loosely packed patty made from minced chicken, beef and lentils. This version is topped with a load of mint chutney and a fried egg, which makes it super flavorful but difficult to eat. So if you only get one more dish, order some seasoned fries ($5), which were excellent straight out of the fryer.

Top it off with a housemade Pakistani refresher called rooh afzah, made from a bright pink syrup that features multiple fruits, flowers and screwpine loaded up with ice, lemon and mint.

Amir's, 263B Meacham Ave., Elmont, 516-270-2803, Open 11 a.m.  to  2 a.m. daily. 

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