Surf and Turf Burgers with Homemade Arugula Pesto

Pairs well with:

Sauvignon Blanc

With hints of passion fruit, melon, and citrus, this wine beckons you to kick back and find a perfect porch swing.


3 Live lobsters (1-1 1/4 lb each) (May substitute 3 store bought raw lobster tails, 3 oz each)
Colavita olive oil, for brushing lobsters; plus 2 tablespoons Kosher salt
Homemade Arugula Pesto
1 Bunch of fresh arugula, tough stems removed, washed, dried and coarsely chopped
1/4 cup lightly toasted pinenuts
1/4 cup lightly toasted hazelnuts
3-4 garlic cloves, minced
½ cup grated parmesan cheese
Freshly ground black pepper
½ cup Colavita olive oil
2 pounds ground chuck beef
2 teaspoon kosher salt
Fresh ground black pepper
Vegetable oil for brushing grill
6 Kaiser rolls



 Preheat a gas grill to medium high heat or prepare a medium-hot fire in a charcoal grill with cover.  To kill the lobsters: Take a cleaver or chef’s knife and slice each lobster into half, starting at the head, the long way through the carapace and tail. Brush meat side with olive oil and sprinkle with salt.  To grill the lobsters: Place lobsters shell side down on grill. Close lid and grill for 4-5 minutes until meat is opaque (turns white). Let rest 5-10 minutes. Remove the meat from each tail half and cut into 3 pieces. Place into a small to medium size metal bowl and add 2 tablespoons of oil. Optional: Cut claw meat into half and add to tail meat. Cover bowl with aluminum foil, place on upper rack of grill, off heat.  To make the Arugula Pesto: In a small food processor, combine the arugula, nuts, garlic, cheese, salt and pepper, and process on high until arugula is finely chopped. With the machine running, add the oil in a steady steam and process until smooth.  To make the patties: Handle the meat as little as possible to avoid compacting it. Divide the meat into 6 equal portions and form portions into patties to fit the rolls. Using all of the salt, sprinkle salt and pepper on both sides of the patties.  Brush the grill rack with oil. Place the patties on the rack, cover, and grill approximately 4 minutes. Turn the patties and continue to grill until done to preference, about 4 minutes longer for rare. Remove patties to upper rack, off heat, to keep warm. Place rolls, cut side down, onto the outer edges of grill rack to toast lightly.  To assemble the burgers, place 1/6th of the pesto over the cut side of the roll top. On each roll bottom, place the patty and then place 1/6th of the lobster pieces. Add the roll tops and serve. Makes 6 burgers.