Rustic Burgers with Goat Cheese and Cherry Relish on Raisin Bread
3/4 pound fresh cherries, pitted and halved
2 pounds 80% lean ground beef
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
2 tablespoons Grey Poupon harvest coarse ground mustard
1/4 cup shallot, finely diced
2 tablespoons Colavita extra virgin olive oil
2 to 3 tablespoons vegetable oil, for brushing the grill rack
8 ounces goat cheese, sliced into 12 equal pieces
12 slices raisin bread, each slightly thicker than 1/2 inch
1/4 cup Colavita extra virgin olive oil
4 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary
Prepare a medium-hot fire in a charcoal grill with a cover.
Slide the cherry halves onto metal skewers and set aside. (Hint: pierce the cherry halves twice so that they will lay flat on the skewer; this makes for easier grilling)
To prepare the patties, combine the beef, salt, pepper, mustard and shallot in a large bowl. Shape into 6 patties and set aside.
When the grill is ready, rub the cherries using 2 tablespoons of olive oil, place the skewers on the outer edges of the grill, cover and cook about 6 minutes, turning once during cooking. Slide the grilled cherries into a bowl and transfer them to a small food processor. Process just until coarsely chopped, return the cherry relish to the bowl and set aside.
Brush the grill rack with vegetable oil. Place the patties on the rack, cover after 1 minute, and cook, turning once, until done to preference, about 4 to 6 minutes per side for medium. In the last 3 minutes of cooking, carefully spoon a generous amount of cherry relish onto each burger and place two slices of goat cheese on top. Replace the grill cover so that the cheese will warm during the last 2 minutes of cooking. Remove the burgers from the grill to rest.
Take the bread and rub one side of each slice using the 1/4 cup of olive oil. Sprinkle rosemary on top. Grill the bread uncovered, rosemary side down, about 1 minute. Flip the bread and grill the other side uncovered for about one minute.
To assemble the burgers, place each patty on one slice of raisin bread with the rosemary side facing up. Then place one slice of raisin bread with the rosemary side facing down on top of the goat cheese.
Makes 6 burgers.