Tapenade Roasted Red Pepper Burgers with Peppered Cheese Spread

Pairs well with:


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


1 2/3 cups liguria black olives, pitted
1/2 cup capers, rinsed and well drained
1 bottled or canned anchovy, rinsed
2 cloves garlic
1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh basil
1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh oregano
Pinch of course salt
1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
5 tablespoons Colavita Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Peppered Cheese Spread:
1 6 ounce container of Treasure Cave Crumbled Feta Cheese
1 6 ounce container of Treasure Cave Shredded Parmesan Cheese
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1 7.25 ounce jar roasted red peppers, drained and finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon Tabasco Sauce

1 1/2 pounds ground chuck
1/2 package of (16 ounce) Johnsonville Ground Italian Hot Sausage
1/2 of 7.25 ounce jar roasted red peppers, drained and finely chopped
1/4 cup onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons fresh rosemary, finely chopped
2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper

1 13oz. jar roasted whole sweet red peppers

Vegetable oil for grill
6 fresh baked focaccia bread sections (4 1/2-inch squares) , sliced horizontally
3 cups arugula


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

To make tapenade: combine the olives, capers, anchovy and garlic in a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Puree until smooth. Add basil, oregano, salt and pepper to mixture. Drizzle the olive oil in while the machine is running a little at a time. Remove from processor to a small bowl and set aside.

To make cheese spread: in medium bowl combine feta cheese, Parmesan cheese and mayonnaise. Stir until cheeses are blended. Add 1 jar chopped red peppers and Tabasco sauce and continue to stir until well blended.

To make patties: in a large bowl add the chuck, sausage, 1/2 jar chopped red peppers, onion, garlic, rosemary, salt and pepper. Wet hands and combine well, handling the meat as little as possible. Form into 6 patties.

Remove 3 whole peppers from jar and cut each pepper in two lengthwise. Set aside

Brush the grill rack with vegetable oil. Place the patties on the rack, cover, and cook for 4 to 5 minutes per side for medium or until the desired doneness is reached. During the last 2 minutes of cooking, place the bread cut sides down on the outer edges of the rack to toast until golden.

To assemble the burgers, divide cheese spread in equal portions on cut side of bread bottom. Top each with 1/2 cup of arugula. Place patties on top of arugula and lay one piece of sweet red pepper across patty; spoon 1 tablespoon of tapenade over sweet red pepper and finish with bread top. Serves 6