For Memorial day I was going to make plain old burgers, but as I was rummaging through my fridge, I saw I had a big block of white cheddar left over from another recipe. A light bulb went off in my head and I immediately looked in my cabinet and sure enough, I had a couple of jars of pimiento peppers because I am nothing if not a person who keeps a well-stocked pantry.
A well-stocked pantry is a happy pantry, I always say.
So I threw together a huge batch of white cheddar pimiento cheese and added some bacon just because it was a holiday. Delish. (And may I add that this cheese spread is fantastic with Kettle chips?)
I had 5 pounds of ground chuck, so I made 16 patties. I layed 8 of them out on a baking sheet and placed a huge, I mean huge scoop of pimiento cheese spread in the middle of each of them. It was unfortunate for me that I ignored that teeny, tiny voice in my head that was saying "Lorie, that is WAY too much pimiento cheese spread."
Shhhhhh tiny voice. I know what I'm doing.
I also didn't listen to that teeny, tiny voice earlier today when I was baking a strawberry cake and filled the pan way too full because I wanted nice, fluffy layers.
Self cleaning an oven when it's a 100 degrees outside and your air conditioner is already working as hard as it can is not fun.
Everything was fine with my giant burgers until I started grilling. As the meat started shrinking, they burst open and oozed cheesy, white lava all over my brand spankin' new grill.
But, and this is a big but, they were some kind of good. Everyone absolutely raved. And I think the recipe can totally be salvaged by using only 4 pounds of meat and a much smaller scoop of cheese spread.
So here are some things to consider:
-This makes way more pimiento cheese spread than you will need to stuff the burgers. Cut the recipe in half or don't cut it in half and use it on sandwiches or as a dip. Or eat it with a spoon straight from the bowl when your husband isn't looking.
-The wine, onion, Worcestershire sauce combo is my basic seasoning for burgers of all kinds. I usually use a Cabernet Sauvignon.
-I loved the onion-poppy seed ciabatta rolls for the buns. I like a nice quality bun for burgers even if I only have plain patties.
-I am a home cook and I make lots of mistakes in the kitchen. Like over-stuffing burgers and over-filling cake pans. Sometimes, though, my mistakes are delicious.
That is all.
White Cheddar-Bacon-Pimiento Cheese Stuffed Burgers
Pimiento Cheese Spread:
3/4 cup mayonnaise
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
4 heaping cups shredded white cheddar cheese
2 (4-ounce) jars diced pimientos, drained
6 slices cooked bacon that has been finely crumbled
Salt and pepper to taste
4 pounds ground chuck
1 small finely chopped or grated onion
1/2 cup red wine (Cabernet Sauvignon or other)
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
4 teaspoons kosher salt
4 teaspoons cracked black pepper
Vegetable oil for brushing on grill rack
8 large good quality buns (I loved onion-poppy seed ciabatta rolls)
Lettuce, onion, tomato slices and condiments
Prepare a medium hot fire in a charcoal grill with a cover, or preheat a gas grill to medium high.
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the mayonnaise and cream cheese until smooth. Stir in the cheese, pimiento peppers, and bacon. Add salt and pepper to taste. (This will make way more than you will need for the burgers. Makes a great dip or sandwich spread.)
To make the patties, combine the beef, chopped onion, wine, Worcestershire sauce, 4 teaspoons salt, and 4 teaspoons cracked black pepper in a large bowl. Handling the meat as little as possible, mix well. Form into 16 equal portions and shape the portions into patties. Lay 8 patties on a large baking sheet that has been covered in wax paper or foil. Place a small amount of the pimiento cheese spread (about a tablespoon) in the center of each patty. Place the remaining patties on top of the cheese and pinch the sides of the meat to seal well.
Brush the grill rack with vegetable oil. Place patties on grill rack, cover, and cook, turning once, until done to preference, about 5-7 minutes on each side for medium. Toast buns on grill rack the last few minutes of cooking. Dress burgers with lettuce, onion, and tomatoes and your choice of condiments. 8 burgers.