ONLINE EXTRA -- BURGERS ON THE GRILL: Cilantro Pesto Beef Burger . . . Lamb Burgers with Tzatziki . . . Sunday Supper Burgers, etc.

Cilantro Pesto Beef Burger FOR THE BURGERS: 2 pounds ground chuck, chilled Sea salt and black pepper 2 tablespoons olive oil 4 slices provolone cheese 4 ciabatta buns 1 large tomato, sliced Large handful arugula FOR THE PESTO: 1 bunch fresh cilan...

Cilantro Pesto Beef Burger


2 pounds ground chuck, chilled

Sea salt and black pepper

2 tablespoons olive oil


4 slices provolone cheese

4 ciabatta buns

1 large tomato, sliced

Large handful arugula


1 bunch fresh cilantro, stemmed

12 roasted, salted macadamia nuts

1 or 2 garlic cloves, to taste


2 cups packed arugula

1 teaspoon fresh lime juice

1/3 teaspoon grated lime zest

6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

¼ cup grated Pecorino Romano


2 tablespoons olive oil

2 tablespoons Dijon mustard


2 tablespoons honey

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

1 large Vidalia or Maui onion, peeled and cut into four thick slices

4 to 6 soaked bamboo skewers

For the pesto: Finely chop the nuts and garlic in a food processor. Add the cilantro, arugula, lime juice and zest and process to coarse puree. With the machine running, add the olive oil in a thin stream and process until smooth. Pulse in the cheese and season to taste. The pesto will keep, chilled, up to two days.

In a bowl, mix the meat, ¼ cup of the pesto and 1½ teaspoons pepper. Divide the meat into four evenly sized patties and chill several hours or overnight.

Preheat the barbecue for the onions. Whisk together the oil, mustard, honey and vinegar, and set aside. Thread one or two skewers through each onion slice. Brush the onions with the oil mixture and season with salt and pepper, then grill them for 15 minutes, flipping several times as they caramelize.

Season the meat on both sides with salt and pepper, and grill for 7 to 10 minutes to desired doneness. For the last minute or two of cooking, drape a slice of cheese over each burger to melt. 5. To serve, spread the bun bottoms with pesto. Top with tomato and arugula. Add the patties and then a grilled onion.


Yield: Serves 4.

Lamb Burgers with Tzatziki


1 pound good quality ground lamb

1 teaspoon minced garlic

½ teaspoon ground cloves

1 teaspoon ground cumin

Sea salt and ground pepper


1 tablespoon olive oil

4 artisan style hard rolls

4 handfuls baby spinach leaves


½ red onion, thinly sliced

1 tablespoon red wine vinegar

1 tablespoon light brown sugar



2-inch piece English cucumber, coarsely grated

¼ cup Greek-style plain yogurt

¼ teaspoon minced garlic

2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint

Mix the lamb, garlic, cloves, cumin and plenty of ground black pepper until well combined. Shape into four burgers. Chill until ready to cook.

Mix the red onion with the vinegar and sugar. Let marinate while you prepare the tzatziki sauce.

Squeeze the cucumber to remove excess moisture, then mix with the yogurt, garlic, mint and a little salt and pepper. Chill.

Sprinkle the burgers with a little salt and brush with olive oil. Grill until cooked through, 4 to 5 minutes per side.

Split the rolls and layer on the baby spinach leaves, burger, tzatziki sauce and the drained, marinated onions.

Yield: Serves 4.

Sunday Supper Burgers


½ cup mayonnaise

¼ cup pickle relish

2 to 3 tablespoons ketchup

3 to 4 drops Tabasco

1 drop Worcestershire

1 tablespoon chopped flat-leaf parsley

1 tablespoon cognac


2 strips bacon, cut in 1 inch pieces

1 onion, thinly sliced

1 pound ground beef

Sea salt and black pepper

½ cup grated sharp Cheddar

6 small brioche or slider buns

1 cup arugula

1 tablespoon minced scallions

Mix the dressing ingredients, and set aside.

Cook the bacon until crisp.

Form the beef into six or more small patties. Season with salt and pepper, and grill them over high heat, a few minutes per side. Top with the grated cheese.

Spread the bottom of each bun with dressing. Top with the arugula, the patty, and finally the crisp bacon and minced scallions. Cover with the tops of the buns and serve.

Yield: Serves 3 to 4.

Buffalo Sliders

1 pound ground buffalo (bison) meat

1 egg white

1 clove garlic, finely minced

½ jalapeno pepper, seeded and finely minced

2 teaspoons ketchup

1¼ teaspoons Worcestershire sauce, divided

½ teaspoon hot pepper sauce

¼ teaspoon cayenne

Salt, to taste

3 tablespoons reduced-fat blue cheese crumbles

3 tablespoons low-fat buttermilk

1 tablespoon low-fat mayonnaise

2 tablespoons finely chopped celery

8 whole-wheat slider buns, split and toasted

1 medium tomato, thinly sliced

Spray grill grates with nonstick spray. Preheat grill to medium high or allow coals to burn down to white ash.

Combine buffalo, egg white, garlic, jalapeno, ketchup, 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce, hot pepper sauce and cayenne. Mix lightly. Shape into 8 thin patties, about 2½ to 3 inches in diameter. Season very lightly with salt.

Grill patties 2 to 3 minutes each side or until meat thermometer registers 155 degrees. Remove from heat, cover and allow to stand about 5 minutes while internal temperature rises to 160 degrees. (Do not overcook.)

Meanwhile, combine blue cheese and buttermilk in a small mixing bowl. Using the back of a fork, mash the blue cheese into the buttermilk. Add mayonnaise and mix well. Stir in celery and remaining ¼ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce.

Place a tomato slice on the bottom of each bun. Top with a buffalo patty, then dollop 2 to 2½ teaspoons blue cheese sauce over the meat, then top with bun.

Yield: Serves 8.

Approximate nutritional analysis per serving: 215 calories, 26 percent of calories from fat, 6 grams fat (2 grams saturated), 47 milligrams cholesterol, 16 grams carbohydrates, 20 grams protein, 243 milligrams sodium, 2 grams dietary fiber.

Blazin' Barn Burger

2 large carrots, peeled, julienned

1 daikon radish, peeled, julienned

2 cups each: white vinegar, sugar

½ cup water

1 cup mayonnaise

¼ cup sriracha chili sauce

1 tablespoon sweetened condensed milk

2 tablespoons each, chopped: fresh basil, cilantro

6 beef burgers, grilled

6 potato buns, halved, toasted

Put carrots and daikon in separate heatproof bowls. Heat vinegar, sugar and water to a boil in a saucepan. Pour evenly over carrots and daikon; cool. Refrigerate covered until ready to use.

Blend mayonnaise, sriracha sauce and sweetened condensed milk. Mix basil and cilantro in a separate bowl. Place a grilled burger patty on the bottom of each bun. Top each with drained pickled carrot and daikon plus basil-cilantro mix. Spread mayonnaise on bun tops. Cover with top buns. Wrap sandwiches in waxed paper for 2 minutes; serve.

Yield: Serves 6.

Approximate nutritional analysis per serving: 474 calories, 55 percent of calories from fat, 29 grams fat (7 grams saturated), 66 milligrams cholesterol, 30 grams carbohydrates, 23 grams protein, 466 milligrams sodium, 3 grams fiber

Home on the Range Burgers

¾ cup mayonnaise

¼ cup sour cream

½ cup minced flat-leaf parsley

1/3 cup chopped fresh chives

2 teaspoons each, finely chopped: fresh tarragon, anchovy fillets, garlic

6 ground beef patties

12 ounces Huntsman cheese, cut into 6 equal slices

6 cracked-wheat hamburger buns, split, toasted

6 tablespoons honey mustard

4 cups coarsely chopped salad mix

Combine mayonnaise, sour cream, parsley, chives, tarragon, anchovies and garlic in a food processor; pulse to blend. Transfer to a small bowl, cover; refrigerate until needed.

Grill burgers; top with cheese during last 2 to 3 minutes of cooking. Spread mustard over bun bottoms and mayonnaise over bun tops. Put salad mix on bun bottoms; top with burgers. Add bun tops.

Yield: Serves 6.

Approximate nutritional analysis per serving: 797 calories, 65 percent of calories from fat, 58 grams fat (9 grams saturated), 137 milligrams cholesterol, 31 grams carbohydrates, 38 grams protein, 952 milligrams sodium, 2 grams fiber.

Feta Turkey Burgers with Spinach

1¼ to 1 1/3 pounds extra-lean ground turkey breast

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1 teaspoon minced onion

¼ teaspoon ground black pepper

½ teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons applesauce

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

¼ cup panko bread crumbs

1½ cups chopped fresh spinach

½ cup crumbled feta cheese (regular or low-fat)


4 grilled zucchini slices

4 honey-wheat or favorite hamburger buns, toasted or grilled

Romaine lettuce leaves

4 slices tomato

Tzatziki sauce (optional, see note)

Preheat the grill to medium.

In a large bowl, combine the ground turkey breast, oregano, parsley, minced onion, black pepper and salt. Fold in the applesauce, Dijon, panko, spinach and feta. Shape into patties about 5 to 6 ounces each.

Grill the patties about 6 minutes on each side or until thoroughly cooked through. The internal temperature should register 165 degrees. Grill the zucchini slices alongside the burgers, brushing them with a bit of oil and seasoning with salt and pepper before grilling. Grill the zucchini about 2 minutes per side.

On the bottom bun, place some romaine leaves, add a tomato slice, grilled zucchini slices and turkey burger. Place a dollop of tzatziki sauce on top if desired.

Note: To make the tzatziki sauce, mix ½ cup chopped cucumber with 1/3 cup plain Greek-style yogurt and 1/3 cup sour cream (or use 2/3 cup of either one), salt and pepper, garlic and fresh or dried oregano, to taste.

Yield: Serves 4.

Approximate nutritional analysis per serving: 364 calories, 17 percent of calories from fat ), 7 grams fat (4 grams saturated), 25 grams carbohydrates, 50 grams protein, 768 milligrams sodium, 137 milligrams cholesterol, 4 grams fiber.

Grilled Turkey Burgers with Barbecued Onions

1 tablespoon olive oil

2 Spanish onions, halved, sliced thinly

2 tablespoons prepared barbecue sauce

1¼ pounds ground turkey (not lean)

¼ cup each: milk, chopped flat-leaf parsley

1 teaspoon smoked Spanish paprika or regular paprika

¼ teaspoon each: salt, freshly ground pepper

4 sesame seed buns

Heat olive oil in a large, heavy skillet over high heat. Add onions; stir-fry onions 2 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low; cook, stirring often, until soft and starting to caramelize, about 15 minutes. Stir in barbecue sauce; cook 1 minute. Remove from heat. Cover; keep warm.

Meanwhile, prepare a grill or grill pan for medium-high heat. Lightly mix turkey, milk, parsley, paprika, salt and pepper in a large bowl; form into 4 patties. Grill until just cooked through, turning once, about 8 minutes. Place on bun bottoms; top each with onions and top buns.

Yield: Serves 4.

Approximate nutritional analysis per serving: 433 calories, 40 percent of calories from fat, 19 grams fat (5 grams saturated), 104 milligrams cholesterol, 32 grams carbohydrates, 33 grams protein, 568 milligrams sodium, 3 grams fiber.

Beef and Bella Burgers

4 medium portabella mushrooms (about 3 1/2 to 4 inches in diameter)

1 tablespoon olive oil

½ cup reduced-sodium beef broth

2 cloves garlic, minced

¼ teaspoon ground pepper

8 ounces lean ground beef (about 90 percent lean; ground round)

½ cup goat's milk cheese crumbles with basil and roasted garlic

4 lettuce leaves

4 whole-wheat hamburger buns, toasted

½ cup chopped tomatoes

Preheat grill to medium high or allow coals to burn down to white ash.

Trim stem from mushrooms. With the tip of a spoon, gently scrape away gills. Brush mushrooms on all sides lightly with olive oil.

Combine beef broth, garlic and pepper. Place mushrooms on hot grill, gill side down and grill over direct heat in covered grill, about 5 minutes or until lightly browned on edges. Brush mushrooms frequently with beef broth mixture while grilling. Turn mushrooms over, gill-side up. Brush with beef broth mixture and grill in covered grill 3 minutes. Spoon about 2 tablespoons goat cheese into the cavity of each mushroom. Grill in covered grill, about 5 to 7 minutes or until mushrooms are tender and hot through.

Meanwhile, shape beef into 4 very thin patties, about 4 inches in diameter and ¼-inch thick. Grill patties quickly over direct hot heat about 3 minutes per side, or until meat thermometer registers 160 degrees, brushing frequently with beef broth mixture.

Place lettuce on bottom of toasted buns. Place grilled mushroom, gill-side up, on lettuce. Top each mushroom with about 2 tablespoons of chopped tomatoes. Top with beef and remaining bun.

Yield: Serves 4.

Approximate nutritional analysis per serving including olive oil: 288 calories, 27 percent of calories from fat, 9 grams fat (4 grams saturated), 15 milligrams cholesterol, 37 grams carbohydrates, 17 grams protein, 291 milligrams sodium, 5 grams dietary fiber.

Approximate nutritional analysis per serving without olive oil: 258 calories, 19 percent of calories from fat), 6 grams fat (4 grams saturated), 15 milligrams cholesterol, 37 grams carbohydrates, 17 grams protein, 291 milligrams sodium, 5 grams dietary fiber.

Pork and Pepperoni Pizza Burgers

1 pound ground pork

½ cup chopped pepperoni (about 2 ounces)

½ cup Italian-style dry breadcrumbs

½ cup prepared pizza sauce

½ teaspoon dried oregano leaves

6 buns

1 cup (4 ounces) shredded Mozzarella cheese

In medium bowl, stir together ground pork, pepperoni, bread crumbs, pizza sauce and oregano. Shape into 6 patties. Grill or broil burgers for 5 minutes per side, until instant read thermometer reaches 160 degrees. Place burgers on bun; top each patty with cheese.

Yield: Serves 6.

Mushroom-Stuffed Pork Burger

2 teaspoons butter

¾ cup thinly sliced mushrooms

¼ cup thinly sliced green onion

1 clove garlic, minced

1½ pounds lean ground pork

1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

1 teaspoon Dijon-style mustard

¼ teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

In medium skillet, saute mushrooms, onion and garlic in butter until tender, about 2 minutes. Combine ground pork, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper; mix well. Shape into 12 patties, about 4 inches in diameter, set aside. Spoon equal portions mushroom mixture onto center of 6 pork patties. Spread to within ½ inch of edge. Top with remaining 6 patties; seal edges. Place patties on grill about 6 inches over medium-hot coals. Grill 10 to 15 minutes, turning once, until instant read thermometer reaches 160 degrees. Serve on buns, if desired.

Yield: Serves 6.

Andouille and Beef Burgers with Spicy Mayo and Caramelized Onions

¾ cup mayonnaise

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1 teaspoon Cajun or Creole seasoning blend

¼ teaspoon hot pepper sauce

½ pound andouille sausage, cut into scant ¼-inch cubes

¾ cup pecans, toasted, chopped

1 teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon ground black pepper

1½ pounds ground beef chuck or ground beef (20 percent fat)

½ pound onions, thinly sliced

2 tablespoons olive oil plus more for brushing grill rack

3 garlic cloves, minced

1 tablespoon golden brown sugar

6 large hamburger buns, split

8 ounces crumbled blue cheese

12 pickled okra pods, halved lengthwise (optional; see note)

3 cups watercress tops (optional)

In small bowl, prepare spicy mayonnaise: Mix together mayonnaise, lemon juice, seasoning blend and hot pepper sauce. Cover and chill. (Can be made 2 days ahead. Keep chilled.)

Prepare burgers: Toss sausage, pecans, salt and pepper in large bowl. Add beef; blend gently. Shape mixture into 6 ½-inch-thick patties. Transfer patties to small baking sheet. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and chill.)

Prepare caramelized onions: Prepare grill (medium-high heat). Toss onions, olive oil, garlic cloves and brown sugar in large skillet. Place skillet on grill; cook until onions are golden, stirring often, about 25 minutes. Remove from grill; season with salt and pepper.

Brush grill rack with olive oil. Grill buns, cut side down, until golden, about 2 minutes. Transfer buns to work surface. Grill burgers until brown on bottom, about 3 minutes. Turn over; sprinkle with cheese. Grill until burgers are cooked to desired doneness, about 3 minutes for medium. Place some onions, then burger, on each bun bottom. Top each with okra and watercress, if desired. Spread mayonnaise on cut side of bun tops; place on burgers. Serve with remaining mayonnaise.

Note: Look for pickled okra where the pickles and relishes are displayed.

Yield: Serves 6.

Grilled Avocado BLT Burgers

1 large sweet onion, halved and thinly sliced

2 tablespoons Tabasco Chipotle Pepper Sauce (divided)

1 tablespoon beef broth

1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

1 tablespoon oil

1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic

1 tablespoon dark brown sugar

6½ ounces light garlic-and-herbs spreadable cheese

4 ounces Point Reyes blue cheese or other favorite blue cheese, crumbled

1 pound ground chuck

1 pound ground sirloin

1/3 cup minced sweet onion

¼ cup Zinfandel

3 tablespoons minced fresh oregano, thyme, and basil (any combination)

1½ teaspoons spicy seasoned salt, plus more for sprinkling on avocado slices

Vegetable oil, for brushing on the grill rack

12 avocado slices

Balsamic vinegar, for brushing on the avocado slices

12 pre-cooked bacon slices

6 soft (4½-inch) Kaiser rolls, split

6 romaine lettuce leaves

6 large (1/8-inch-thick) large tomato slices

Prepare medium-hot fire in charcoal grill with cover, or preheat gas grill to medium-high.

To make caramelized onions, combine onion, 1 tablespoon pepper sauce, broth, vinegar, oil, garlic and brown sugar in 10-inch non-stick, fire-proof skillet. Cover with lid and place on grill rack. Cook onion mixture 15 to 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until onions are caramelized and most of the liquid is evaporated. Remove pan from grill and set aside.

To make spread, combine cheeses in fire-proof saucepan, cover, and set aside.

To make patties, combine chuck, sirloin, onion, Zinfandel, herbs, remaining 1 tablespoon pepper sauce and seasoned salt in large bowl. Handling meat as little as possible to avoid compacting it, mix well. Divide mixture into 6 equal portions and form portions into patties to fit rolls.

When grill is ready, brush grill rack with vegetable oil. Place patties on rack, cover, and cook, turning once, until done to preference, 5 to 7 minutes on each side for medium. Meanwhile, place saucepan with cheese spread on outer edge of rack to warm cheese mixture just until it reaches a very soft, spreading consistency. Remove saucepan from grill and set aside.

During final minutes of grilling patties, brush avocado slices with balsamic vinegar and sprinkle with seasoned salt. Arrange on rimmed non-stick perforated grilling pan coated lightly with oil and grill alongside patties for 1 to 2 minutes, turning as necessary. During final 30 seconds, add bacon slices to pan. When avocados are nicely grilled and bacon is crisp, remove from grill. When patties are cooked, remove from grill, stacking to keep warm. Place rolls, cut side down, on outer edges of grill rack to toast lightly.

To assemble burgers, spread a generous amount of cheese mixture over cut sides of the rolls. On each roll bottom, place a lettuce leaf, a tomato slice, a patty, an equal portion of caramelized onions, 2 avocado slices and 2 bacon slices. Add roll tops and serve.

Yield: Serves 6.

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