RECIPES: Recipe Details

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Big Easy Burgers

I visited New Orleans for the first time this year and was entranced by the blend of traditions from the Spanish, Italian, French, Native American and African in their dishes. This one is loosely based on the sandwich unique to the city called a "muffaletta."

Ingredients 

Burgers:
1 ½ pounds ground round hamburger
½ pound Andouille sausage or chorizo sausage
2 teaspoons capers
3 teaspoons paprika
2 teaspoons garlic powder
½ teaspoon cayenne powder
1 ½ teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon coarse ground pepper
1 ½ teaspoons ground ginger
Vegetable oil for greasing grill 6 soft round sandwich rolls (Kaiser), split

Toppings:
6 ounces drained chopped sweet red pepper
6 slices provolone cheese (about 4-6 ounces)
7 ounces commercially prepared olive tapenade
1/3 cup chopped red onion
1 cup lightly packed fresh basil leaves

Instructions 

Prepare a medium-hot fire in a charcoal grill with a cover. Make patties by mixing meat and spices thoroughly and compacting well. Divide evenly into 12 thin patties. When the grill is ready, brush the grill rack with vegetable oil. Place patties on the rack and cook, turning once until done to preference, about 2 to 3 minutes per side. Spread chopped red peppers over half the burgers, top with the remaining 6 patties to make layers or towers. Top towers with provolone cheese slices. Place rolls, cut side down, on outer edges of rack to toast slightly. Cover and heat until cheese melts, about 1 minute. To assemble the burgers, cover the tops and bottoms of rolls generously with olive tapenade, reserving about 2 teaspoons for garnish. On each roll bottom, place a patty tower, top with red onion and fresh basil leaves. Add roll tops, brush with remaining tapenade, and serve. Makes 6 generous servings.