Prep 30 mins
Cook 14 mins
1990 Grand Prize, Build a Better Burger Contest, Jim Pleasants, Williamsburg, VA
- 2⁄3 cup mayonnaise
- 2 tablespoons prepared basil pesto
- 2 lbs ground sirloin
- 1⁄4 cup zinfandel
- 1⁄4 cup lighlty packed minced fresh basil
- 1⁄4 cup minced red onion
- 1⁄4 cup fresh Italian seasoned breadcrumbs
- 8 sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil, finely chopped
- 2 teaspoons garlic salt
- 8 large basil sprigs, moistened with water
- 6 large seeded sandwich buns, split
- 6 slices monterey jack cheese
- 6 leaves red leaf lettuce
- 6 slices tomatoes, large slices
- 6 slices red onions, separated into rings (should be sliced paper thin)
- 6 basil sprigs, for serving
- Prepare a med-hot fire in a charcoal grill with a cover or preheat a gas grill to med-high.
- Make the mayonnaise: combine the mayo and pesto in a small bowl; mix well; cover and chill until needed.
- Make the burgers: In a large mixing bowl, combine the sirloin, Zinfandel, basil, onion, bread crumbs, sun-dried tomatoes, and garlic salt.
- Handling the meat as little as possible to avoid compacting it, mix well.
- Divide the mixture into 6 equal portions and form the portions into patties to fit the rolls.
- When the grill is ready, brush the grill rack with vegetable oil.
- Toss the moistened basil sprigs directly onto the fire.
- Place the patties on the rack, cover, and cook 5-7 minutes on each side for medium.
- During the last few minutes of cooking, place the rolls, cut side down, on the outer edges of the grill to toast lightly.
- During the last minute of cooking, top each patty with a cheese slice.
- To assemble: spread the mayonnaise over the cut sides of the rolls; on each bottom roll, place a lettuce leaf, a patty, a tomato slice, an onion slice, and a basil sprig.
- Add roll tops and serve.
Very nice burger but I didn't have any luck with basil-smoking. The pesto mayo is divine.