Ciao Burger with Roasted Red Pepper Aioli, Fontina and Crispy Pancetta
2/3 cup mayonnaise
1/3 cup diced roasted red pepper
1 tablespoon olive oil
18 slices pancetta, (about 8 ounces)
1/2 cup chopped sweet onion
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup chopped and drained, oil packed sun-dried tomatoes
2 cups chopped fresh baby spinach leaves
2 1/2 pounds ground beef chuck
1/2 cup shredded Asiago cheese
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
vegetable oil to brush on grill rack
6-2 ounce slices fontina cheese
6 bakery style kaiser rolls, split
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 cups baby arugula leaves, stems removed
Mix mayonnaise and roasted red pepper together in a small bowl to make aioli. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
Heat a gas grill to medium high heat. Place 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large, heavy, fireproof skillet and place skillet on hot grill. When oil is hot, add pancetta and cook until crispy. Remove to paper towels to drain. Set aside.
Drain all but 2 tablespoons pancetta drippings from skillet and place skillet back on hot grill. Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until starting to turn golden. Add garlic, cook 1 minute. Add sundried tomatoes and spinach, and cook, stirring, until spinach is just wilted. Cool slightly.
Combine chuck, tomato and spinach mixture, asiago cheese, salt and pepper in a large mixing bowl, handling as little as possible. Shape mixture into 6 patties to fit the rolls.
Brush the grill rack with vegetable oil. Place the patties on the rack, cover, and cook , turning once until done to preference, about 5-7 minutes per side for medium.
Place the cheese slices on the patties during the last 3 minutes of grilling. Brush the cut sides of rolls with 2 tablespoons of olive oil and place cut side down on outer edges of grill rack during last 2 minutes of grilling.
To assemble burgers, spread roasted red pepper aioli among roll bottoms. Top each with an equal portion of arugula, a patty, 3 pieces pancetta and roll tops. Serve with a glass of Sutter Home Zinfandel and enjoy
Yield: 6 burgers