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Chocolate and Garlic OH MY! What a Burger!

My friend and her husband found this burger contest and encouraged me to enter. She said,"You are a great cook,make a great burger!" He said,"You grill at our house and we love everything so you can win this!" That is why I am entering this contest. I thought about creating a burger which combines some of my favorite things and also presenting a burger that has a taste sensation that is truly unique! No small task, but I know that I have done it! So here are my favorites....beyond any doubt my favorite food ingredient is garlic. My all time favorite and what I live to eat is chocolate. When I drink wine,it is almost always a merlot with that great cherry flavor. I have put them all together. The cherry tones are superb with the chocolate and they both seem to blend well with the bold roasted garlic flavor. This is how and why I created my Chocolate and Garlic OH MY! What a Burger!


1 Head or Bulb of Elephant Garlic
1/4 cup of Colavita Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 large Red Bell Pepper
2 extra large vidalia onions
2 sticks of unsalted butter softened(one for carmelizing onions and one for buns)
18 ounces of fresh ground chuck
18 ounces of fresh ground sirloin
2 tablespoons of Hershey's Cocoa (Sweetened)
1 tablespoon  Seasoned Salt
1/2 cup of Sutter Home Merlot
1 tablespoon of worceshire sauce
3/4 pound of Havarti cheese...sliced into 6 thick slices
6  Potato Sandwich Rolls
1 large Beefstake tomato cut into 6 slices
3 cups finely shredded lettuce


Prepare the Roasted Elephant Garlic: Cut off 1/2" of the top of the garlic to expose cloves. Soak in cold water for 30 minutes. Pre-heat the grill(both sides) on high for the last 10 minutes that garlic is soaking. Put Extra Virgin Olive Oil in a 12"cast iron skillet. Remove cloves of garlic from head and add to skillet. Sprinkle with kosher salt.Put skillet on grill. Leave on high for 15 minutes. Then lower to low and cook for about an hour until they are very soft. Remove from grill and then transfer to a large bowl to cool. Mash garlic when cooled in a small food processor.Set aside 4 teaspoons of mash to be used on the grilled buns. Prepare the Red Bell Pepper: Put directly on grill while on high when you first put on garlic. Turn every 2-3 minutes until totally blackened. Remove from grill. Put in small paper bag until cooled. Remove all charred skin and mash in small food processor. Prepare the Carmelized Onions: Put 1 stick of butter into a 12" cast iron skillet. Thinly slice the onions and add to skillet. Should be on high. Leave onions about 15 to 20 minutes until desired translucent and browned surface. Remove from heat. Put in bowl and cover with foil to retain the heat. Preparing the Hamburger Patties: ***IMPORTANT..Please handle the meat as little as possible but make sure that everything is well blended***** Put ground meat into a large bowl. In a small bowl,combine crushed garlic,mashed red bell pepper,cocoa,seasoned salt,Merlot wine,and worceshire sauce and blend well. Pour into meat and blend carefully. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. Take out and prepare 6 6 ounce patties. Do not press meat together but lightly shape the patties. Put on high temperature grill for 5 minutes on the first side. Flip with spatula and cook other side approximately 5 minutes until ideal temperature of at least 160 degrees for health and maximum flavors. When you flip the burgers,turn on other side of the grill to high to get ready for browning and grilling the roasted garlic buttered buns. During the last 2 minutes of cooking,top each burger with a heaping helping of carmelized onions and a slice of cheese. Close lid. Preparing the buns: Blend 1 stick of softened butter and mashed roasted garlic. Generously spread on each half of the bun. Put on grill to brown during the same time that you put onions and cheese on burgers so it will all be ready at the same time. Assembling the burger: Place burger on bottom bun. Then add tomato slice so it adheres to the cheese and does not slide when you eat it. Put 1/2 cup shredded lettuce and add top of bun. Serve immediately and enjoy with a glass of Merlot!


This recipe and times are for a gas grill. Use both sides for preparation of ingredients but all six burgers can be cooked on one side. Buns can be heated on the other side during the last 2 minutes of cooking with lid closed. The cooking time is for medium 160 degree temperature burgers. Adjust the cooking times to your family's preference when necessary.