Wine Varietal: Zinfandel
Creamy Stilton Spread:
3/4 cup Stilton cheese
1/4 cup mayonnaise
2 Tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 Tablespoon sherry vinegar
Brown Sugar Bacon:
18 slices thick cut pepper bacon
2/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
2 pounds ground chuck
1 small red onion, grated
2 Tablespoons fresh chopped rosemary
1 Tablespoon fresh chopped garlic
2 Tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 firm pears, cored and thinly sliced (skin intact)
2 cups washed and gently torn arugula
Oil for the grill grate
6 Kaiser rolls, hamburger bun size, split horizontally
Make a medium/hot fire in a charcoal grill with a cover, or preheat a gas grill to medium high.
To make the Creamy Stilton Spread, mix the Stilton, mayonnaise, mustard, and vinegar in a small bowl until well combined. Refrigerate until serving.
To make the brown sugar bacon, place the bacon in a large skillet on top of the middle of the grill. Turn the bacon once the bottom is crisp, about 4 minutes. Cook on this side for about three minutes, until almost completely crisp. Sprinkle the bacon with the brown sugar, turning to coat evenly. Cook until the sugar has melted and bacon is glazed on both sides. Remove bacon to a plate. Cover and set aside.
To make the patties, add the beef, onion, rosemary, garlic, Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper to a medium bowl. Combine, mixing gently so that the meat does not get compacted. Divide into 6 equal portions and gently shape into patties that equal the size of the Kaiser rolls. Refrigerate until grilling.
To grill the patties, brush the grill rack with oil. Place patties on the rack, cover and grill approximately 4 minutes, until golden brown on the bottom. Turn the patties gently, and grill an additional 3-4 minutes, or until meat reaches an internal temperature of 160 degrees on an instant-read thermometer. Remove from the grill and let rest tented with foil, about three minutes.
While the patties rest, place the Kaiser rolls, cut side down on the grill and toast lightly, about 2 minutes.
To assemble the burgers, thinly spread all roll tops and bottoms with Creamy Stilton Spread, evenly divide pear slices and arugula and place on top of roll bottoms, and top with patties. Top each patty with three slices of Brown Sugar Bacon. Add the roll tops and serve.
Makes 6 burgers