Endless Summer Burgers a.k.a. Mozzarella-Basil Burgers with Grilled Prosciutto-Wrapped Melon & Arugula Salad

Pairs well with:


Bright and full-bodied, this Zinfandel wine is a curious contradiction in tastes.


Basil Puree and Mayo:
2 cups packed basil leaves, roughly chopped
½ cup mint leaves
1 tsp. fresh lemon juice
3 TBSP Colavita Extra Virgin Olive Oil
6 TBSP mayonnaise
1 tsp. freshly grated lemon zest
1 large garlic clove, pressed
¼ tsp. sea salt

½ cup grated red onion
1 cup diced fresh whole milk mozzarella
¼ cup Sutter Home Sauvignon Blanc
2 TBSP double-strength tomato paste
2 TBSP soy sauce
1 tsp. kosher salt
1½ tsp. freshly ground pepper
2 pounds ground chuck

Vinaigrette for Arugula Salad:
2 tsp. fresh lemon juice
2 tsp. aged balsamic vinegar
3 TBSP Colavita Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 tsp. honey
1½ tsp. Dijon mustard
¼ tsp. each sea salt and freshly ground pepper

Remaining Ingredients:
3 ½-inch thick rings cut from the center of a cantalope
6 thin slices Prosciutto, halved crosswise
1½ TBSP Colavita Extra Virgin Olive Oil
vegetable oil for grill grates
6 good quality, not too hard, hamburger rolls, split
4 ounces baby arugula


Preheat gas grill to medium high.

Combine chopped basil, mint, and 1 tsp. lemon juice in a mini food processor and pulse to finely chop herbs. Add 3 TBSP olive oil and puree, scraping down sides as needed. Mixture will remain chunky. Remove 2 TBSP of the basil puree to a small bowl and whisk in mayonnaise, lemon zest, pressed garlic and ¼ tsp. sea salt. Cover and refrigerate until needed.

Place remaining basil puree in a large bowl and whisk in red onion, mozzarella, wine, tomato paste, soy sauce, kosher salt and pepper. Gently but thoroughly mix in beef and shape mixture into 6 patties to fit buns, with a slight indentation in the center. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and set aside.

In another large bowl, whisk together remaining 2 tsp. lemon juice, balsamic vinegar, 3 TBSP olive oil, honey, mustard, sea salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate until needed.

Remove seeds and rinds from cantalope slices and cut each into quarters. You will have 12 slices. Wrap each melon slice tightly with a prosciutto slice and brush with the remaining 1½ TBSP olive oil.

When grill is ready, grill the wrapped melon slices, covered, until prosciutto is nicely browned, about 3 minutes per side. Remove to a plate and set aside.

Brush the grill rack with vegetable oil. Place the patties on the rack, cover and cook, turning once, until done to preference, 5-6 minutes per side for medium. Place the rolls, cut sides down, on the outer edges of the rack to toast lightly during the last few minutes of grilling.

To assemble burgers, toss the arugula with the vinaigrette and mound on the roll bottoms. Top each with a burger and 2 wrapped melon slices. Spread the cut side of roll tops with the mayo mixture and place atop melon slices. Serves 6.