Wine Varietal: Merlot
Inspired by a trip to East Tennessee, reminds me of hanging out on a deck enjoying the scenic tree tops and treating my taste buds to some good, mountain eats. The perfect way to refuel after hiking or zip-lining all day, this burger is wrapped in smoky bacon and smothered with a summit of cheeses — plus, inside the delicious beef patty a smoky sweet secret awaits!
For Blue Cheese Summit:
1/3 cup blue cheese
1/3 cup shredded mozzarella
2 tablespoons cream cheese
1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives
2 teaspoons milk(more or less as needed)
2 Â½ pounds ground beef chuck
12 slices hardwood smoked bacon
1/2 cup chopped smoked almonds
Â¼ cup chopped golden raisins
3 tablespoons chopped parsley leaves
2 tablespoons grated onion
1 stick butter (8 tablespoons), softened and divided in half
Canola oil for brushing grill
6 wheat sweet sourdough buns, split
1 teaspoon garlic paste
6 ounces baby lettuce mix
In a small bowl, mash together blue cheese, mozzarella cheese, cream cheese, chives with enough milk to make a thick, chunky spread. Keep cool until ready to serve.
Divide meat into 12 equal pieces, forming each piece into ball. Flatten each ball into a 3 Â½-inch thick patty.
Heat gas grill to medium-high. In skillet on grill, sautÃ© bacon until semi-done, when fat is starting to cook off, but the bacon is not yet crisped. Remove bacon, set aside on paper towels to drain.
In small bowl mix together almonds, raisins, parsley, onion, and 4 tablespoons of butter (save remainder for buns). Spread mixture on the top of 6 of the patties. Cover these “topped” patties with the 6 remaining patties and seal edges. Wrap each sealed patty set with 2 slices of the partially cooked bacon wrapping around front to back in a cross pattern and securing with a tooth pick.
Brush grill with canola oil; bring back up to medium high heat. Grill burgers for approximately 12 â€“ 14 minutes total (or until desired doneness, recommended 155 F degrees in center), flipping once. Transfer cooked burgers to platter and smear with a portion of the blue cheese spread, allowing it to get warm up from the burger and get gooey.
While burgers are resting, mix remaining 4 tablespoons of butter with 1 teaspoon of garlic paste. Spread top and bottom buns with equal amount of garlic butter and place buns on the grill, face down, and toast for approximately 1 minute on medium-low heat.
To serve, add baby lettuce to bottom bun half, top with burger blue-cheese side up, top with remaining bun half.