Recipes: Emeril's Best Burger Ever Challenge

All "laid to rest" on a seeded Kaiser roll

Directions:

Add 2 tbsp. of extra virgin olive oil to a medium hot 12-inch skillet. Add the chopped pieces of pancetta to the skillet and saute, do not brown. Add chopped onion and saute until sweated. Add the chopped cloves of garlic, and saute the mixture until garlic becomes fragrant. Remove from heat, and immediately add the chopped basil. Allow mixture to cool.

Combine beef, pork and pancetta mixture in a large mixing bowl. Then add the following burger ingredients: carrot, parsley, Parmesan/asiago/goat cheeses, Worcestershire sauce, oregano, ground black pepper/ salt to taste and a splash of wine! Combine all the ingredients, using a large rubber spatula (not by hand). Refrigerate the entire mixture in clear plastic wrap for at least 90 minutes.

Preheat and season grill. Form ½ lb patties and grill on each side for 6-8 minutes. Remove from grill.

COOK'S NOTE: You may add slab of fresh mozzarella cheese now and melt over the top of the burger in broiler OR just enjoy the burger with the fresh mozzarella as is, cold from the refrigerator!

TO ASSEMBLE: Spread both sides of Kaiser roll with homemade pesto sauce. Add red leaf lettuce and place patty on top. Place the slice of tomato and healthy slab of fresh mozzarella cheese, then top with fresh arugula, basil, roasted red pepper and finally, thin filets of anchovies! You finally "whack" the soprano's burger (or in Emeril's words, "BAM" the burger) with a pinch of paprika, oregano, grated Parmesan cheese, salt and ground black pepper.

SUZY'S TEXICAN BURGER

Suzy Tarnowski, Cypress, Texas

Ingredients: 1 lb. ground chuck

1 cup crushed corn tortilla chips

½ cup chopped onion

1 egg

2 tbsp chopped fresh cilantro

1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce

1 tsp garlic salt

1 tsp paprika

½ tsp cumin

½ tsp chili powder

4 toasted bakery buns (spray inside of buns with butter flavored cooking spray and toast on grill 'till lightly browned)

Jalapeno mayonnaise (recipe follows)

Shredded cheddar cheese

One large avocado

Shredded lettuce

Salt to taste

Combine first 10 ingredients in a medium bowl. Mix with hands until combined. Shape beef mixture into four round patties. Cook over medium high flame on grill for 5 mins per side for medium doneness or longer, if desired.

Jalapeno Mayo: ½ cup mayo

1 tbsp minced pickled jalapeno (about 5 jalapeno slices from a jar)

1 tbsp chopped fresh cilantro

1 tsp prepared minced garlic

Combine ingredients in a small bowl, cover, and chill until ready to use.

To assemble burgers, spread mayo on toasted buns. Add patties and top with shredded cheddar cheese and lettuce and avocado slices on top of the burger, plus a little salt and pepper on top of the avocado. Top with bun and enjoy!

HONEY-PEPPERED PORK BURGER WITH FRESH PEACH RELISH

Laureen Pittman, Riverside, Calif.

Burger Ingredients: 1½ lbs ground pork

½ tsp ground coriander

½ tsp garlic powder

1 tsp coarsely ground black pepper

2 tsp ketchup

1-2 canned chipotle peppers, chopped finely (use 2 if you like it spicy!)

1 tsp salt

2 tbsp Dijon mustard

3 tbsp honey

4 onion rolls

Peach relish (recipe follows)

1½ c shredded green cabbage

Peach Relish Ingredients:

2 large firm-ripe peaches, peeled, seeded and coarsely chopped

2 tbsp chopped red onion

2 tbsp honey

1 clove garlic, chopped

2 tbsp apple cider vinegar

Pinch (or more) cayenne pepper

Salt and pepper to taste

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