Formaggio Pomodoro Burger with Basil-Avocado Spicioli

Pairs well with:

Cabernet Sauvignon

This rich red easily complements your homemade chicken dishes, red meats, game, and mildly seasoned pastas.


Basil-Avocado Spicioli

1 Hass Avocado, peeled, halved and chopped
1/2 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
3 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh basil
1 1/2 teaspoons Tabasco Garlic Pepper Sauce
1 teaspoon Weber Zesty Lemon Grill Seasoning

4 ounces pancetta, rind removed and finely diced

Formaggio Pomodoro

6 large ripe Roma tomatoes
3 ounces Treasure Cave Crumbled Gorgonzola Cheese
3 ounces Treasure Cave Shredded Parmesan Cheese
3 tablespoons pignoli (pine) nuts
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
1 clove garlic, minced
2 teaspoons Colavita Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 teaspoons Colavita Balsamic Vinegar
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper


2 pounds ground chuck
1/2 cup Treasure Cave Shredded Parmesan Cheese
1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
2 tablespoons capers, rinsed, drained and minced
2 teaspoons Weber Gourmet Burger Seasoning
3/4 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper

Vegetable oli for brushing on the grill rack
6 Ciabatta or Kaiser rolls, split
5 ounces baby arugula leaves


Prepare a medium-hot fire in a charcoal grill with a cover or preheat a gas grill to medium-high.

To make basil-avocado spicioli, place avocado, sour cream, mayonnaise, lemon juice, basil, pepper sauce and zesty lemon seasoning in food processor or blender. Process until smooth and creamy;transfer to a bowl. Wrap with plastic and refrigerate.

When the grill is ready, place the pancetta in a medium fire-proof skillet and cook on the grill 5-6 minutes or until just starting to brown. Remove pancetta to paper towel-lined plate. Cover with plastic wrap;set aside.

To make formaggio pomodoro, scoop out the insides of the tomato halves. In a medium bowl, stir together cheeses, pignoli nuts, parsely, garlic, olive oil, balsamic vineger, salt and pepper. Stuff the mixture evenly into the hollow of each tomato half and pack firmly. Brush the grill rack with vegetable oil. Place tomatoes on the rack and close lid. Grill for 10 to 14 minutes, until tomatoes are slightly charred and softened. Remove from grill to plate. Cover with plasic wrap and set aside.

To make patties, in a large bowl combine the cooked pancetta, ground chuck, cheese, red onion, capers, gourmet burger seasoning and pepper. Handling the meat as little as possible to avoid compacting it, mix well. Form into 6 patties. Brush the grill rack with vegetable oil. Place the patties on the grill, cover, and cook, turning once, until done to preference, 5-7 minutes on each side for medium. Place the rolls, cut side down, on the outer edges of the rack to toast lightly during the last 2 minutes of grilling. Remove the patties and rolls.

To assemble the burgers, spread the basil-avocado spicioli on the cut sides of the rolls. Divide the arugula evenly over each roll bottom. Place a patty over the arugula. Top each with two formaggio pomodoro halves. Add the roll tops, press down slightly, and serve.

Makes 6 burgers