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Balsamic Burger with mozzarella, bacon and kalamata olives

This post brought to you by Char-Broil. The content and opinions expressed below are completely mine.
  This modern take on the classic cheeseburger really packs on the flavor. The easy recipe adds a Mediterranean twist by featuring kalamata olives, heirloom tomatoes and a balsamic reduction. The ingredients for this burger are fairly simple so you'll definitely want to use the best quality you can get your hands on. The biggest secret in flavor though lies in the way you grill the meat. Keep reading for this easy and delicious recipe as well as a few expert grilling tips and tricks.
  There are a few important tips to remember when cooking the perfect hamburger. The first tip is to flip the patty just once. This will help the meat heat evenly on both sides. Second, avoid the temptation to press the burger down. This will help keep the meat juicy and tender. The third tip is to cook the burger on either an indoor griddle or a great quality outdoor grill that provides even heat with minimal to no flare ups.
  I want to show you my new favorite grills I found at Lowe's. These infrared grill are the ones used in high end steak houses. Haven't you ever wondered how they can cook their meat to tender juicy perfection! These grills use a special cooking grate which spreads heat evenly across the grill top. This also virtually eliminates all scorching flare-ups. Learn more about Char-Broil’s infrared technology you are seriously going to love it.

Kalamata Balsamic Burger

Servings: makes 4 burgers
Original Recipe by: Dave Clements
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

  • 1lb Ground Angus Beef
  • 3/4 C. Balsamic Reduction
  • 1/2 C. Kalamata olives, pitted
  • 2 large Tomatoes, heirloom variety if available
  • 4-8 slices Mozzarella Cheese
  • 8 slices cooked Bacon
  • Freshly Baked Hard Rolls
  1. Begin by preparing a balsamic reduction. Prepare tomatoes by cutting into 1/2 inch slices; coarsely chop kalamata olives.
  2. Cook bacon on skillet. On the same skillet place tomatoes face down and grill 5 minutes. Flip and grill additional 5 minutes.
  3. Shape ground beef into four patties being careful not to over work the meat. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and place on skillet. Grill on each side for 5-10 minutes depending on taste and add cheese 2 minutes before removing burgers.
  4. When cheese has melted place on bun and spoon balsamic reduction over the burger. Add tomatoes, olives, bacon and enjoy.

If you're using olives with pits, make sure you completely remove the pits before chopping. You want a coarse chop just to break up the olives. Next slice the tomatoes. Make sure your knife is sharp; it will make your life a whole lot easier. A good set of knives is definitely worth investing in. If you don't have a set, start out small by purchasing a good Chef's knife or Santoku knife. Williams-Sonoma carries a nice variety of knives that will last a lifetime.

Place balsamic vinegar over high heat and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer about 10 minutes until vinegar has reduced by half. Keep an eye on the reduction because it will easily burn if left to simmer too long. An easy way to tell if the balsamic is ready is to run a spoon across the bottom of the pan. If the reduction parts and you can see the bottom of the pan, it's ready.

I love fresh organic tomatoes. The flavor is beyond compare. If you've ever tasted an heirloom variety you know exactly what I mean. Heirloom tomatoes are a non-hybrid variety and also not genetically modified. Many tomatoes available in supermarkets are bred for shelf life and disease resistance; the compromise comes at the expense of flavor. Your best option is to buy tomatoes "in season" which in my neck of the woods is between July and September. 

I hope you enjoyed this simple, fast, delicious recipe.
It will definitely be a staple on my list of foods to grill this summer.
Also, if you're looking to take your BBQ grillin' skills to the
next level, you will definitely need to check out the
Char-Broil Commercial Series Grills
The TRU-Infrared grills are the absolute best on the market!

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