5 Cheese Garlic Burgers on Handcrafted Buns With Basil & Pancetta


HANDCRAFTED CHEDDAR GARLIC BUNS (or use your favorite type of bun)

-1 pound loaf of frozen Rhodes White Bread Dough
-2 teaspoons garlic powder
-1 cup of 3/8″ cubed sharp cheddar cheese
-dried parsley (for topping on bun)
-1 egg (for egg washing the top of the buns)


-3 ounces Laughing Cow Light Garlic and Herb spreadable cheese
-5 tablespoons chunky bleu cheese salad dressing
-2 teaspoons Grey Poupon Dijon Mustard


-2 pounds ground chuck
-2 tablespoons Colavita Olive Oil
-2 teaspoons McCormick Steak Seasoning
-2 cloves fresh minced garlic
-4 ounces crumbled gorgonzola


-Colavita Olive Oil for brushing on the dough, pans and grill rack
-12 slices pancetta (approx. 3 oz package with 12 slices; if package has 24 slices, cook 2 slices together to make 12 portions)
-6 thick slices sharp white cheddar
-12 fresh basil leaves (rinsed)


-brush (for olive oil)
-tongs (to turn pancetta)
-small loaf pan
-parchment paper
-(2)11″ X 17 1/2″ cookie sheets



Prepare a low fire in a charcoal grill with a cover, or preheat a gas grill on low.

To make the cheddar garlic buns, pull out a frozen 1 pound loaf of dough. Using olive oil, brush the inside of a loaf pan and the entire 1 pound loaf of frozen dough. Place the frozen dough in loaf pan and place loaf pan on top shelf of grill and close the lid (if using a charcoal grill without a top shelf, place loaf pan on the outer edge of grill, as far away from the heat as possible and close lid, MAKE SURE FIRE IS LOW). Let the dough unthaw for 10 minutes with heat on low. Turn grill off and let dough rise for 40 minutes inside the grill with lid down (if using a charcoal grill, remove dough from grill, cover with cloth and let rise for 40 minutes close to the grill for warmth).

Remove loaf pan from grill and take the dough out. Flatten dough, spread 1 teaspoon of garlic powder over dough and knead in. Flatten dough again, spread second teaspoon of garlic powder over dough and knead in. Next, knead in a 1/4 cup of the cubed sharp cheddar. Knead in another 1/4 cup of the cubed sharp cheddar. Do this until all the cubed cheese in kneaded into the dough. Divide dough into six equal parts, appoximately a 1/2 cup of dough per bun. Roll each portion of dough in between your hands making a ball. Lightly brush an 11″ x 17 1/2″ cookie sheet with olive oil and place balls of dough on cookie sheet. After all the dough is placed on cookie sheet, place parchment paper on top of dough, take same size cookie sheet (11″ x 17 1/2″) and place on top of parchment paper. Press down firmly creating buns. Let buns proof for 15 minutes with cookie sheet on top. While buns are proofing, restart grill on low and make egg wash by cracking 1 egg into a bowl and whisking until smooth. Take cookie sheet off the top of the buns, brush buns lightly with egg wash, sprinkle dried parsley on top of buns and let relax for another 15 minutes.

With grill on low, place an empty 11″ x 17 1/2″ cookie sheet on bottom rack of grill and POUR 1 CUP OF WATER in it. Place the cookie sheet with the buns on top of the cookie sheet with the water to double pan (this keeps the buns from getting too dark on the bottom) and bake. As buns are baking, place pancetta on top rack and cook until crisp. Set pancetta aside. Bake buns for approximately 30 minutes or until done. Buns are done when you gently push on top and the indention springs back. After buns are done, let rest for 20 minutes, cut buns in half and set aside.

To make the spread, combine the garlic and herb cheese, salad dressing and mustard. Mix well and set aside.

To make the patties, combine the chuck, olive oil, seasoning, garlic, and gorgonzola in a large bowl. 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 buns.

Preheat grill to medium-high. When grill is ready, brush the grill rack with olive oil. Place the patties on the rack, cover, and cook, turning once, until done to preference, 4-5 minutes on each side for medium. During the last few minutes place 1 slice of sharp white cheddar on each patty and place buns, cut side down, on the top rack to toast lightly.

To assemble the burgers, spread a generous amount of the bleu cheese spread over the cut sides of each bun. On each bun bottom, place a patty, 2 portions of pancetta, and two basil leaves. Add the bun tops and serve.

Makes 6 burgers.