Slider Burger with Merlot-Caramelized Onions and Blue Cheese

Serves 8

This recipe is simple, easy and fun to eat. The combination of the caramelized onions and the blue cheese pair well with Merlot. Use a good sharp blue like our local Point Reyes Farmstead Blue and excellent quality grass-fed beef.

  • 1 1/2 pounds  Ground beef, (18-20% fat)
  • 1 teaspoon  rosemary, chopped
  • to taste   kosher salt
  • 8 grinds  freshly ground black pepper
  • 8 each   small rolls (potato rolls or any other style that is soft and small)
  • 1/4 pound  Blue cheese
  • 1 cup   Merlot Caramelized Onions (recipe below)

Form small burger patties that are approximately 2 1/2 – 3 ounces each. Be careful to press them gently so they remain tender. Sprinkle both sides with salt, ground pepper and rosemary. Pre-heat a grill to medium-hot. Rub a little oil on the grill and then cook the burgers medium-rare.

While the sliders are cooking, split the buns in half  and toast on the corner of the grill. Place one cooked slider burger on each bun bottom. Top with blue cheese first followed by warm caramelized onions. This ensures the cheese will melt and stay on the burger when you eat it. Place bun top and enjoy!

Merlot Caramelized Onions

This recipe makes more that you need for the burgers. It will keep in the fridge for a couple of weeks. Try it on sandwiches, grilled chicken or steaks.

  • 4 each  medium red onion, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 2 cups  Merlot
  • 1/2 cup  sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons  balsamic vinegar
  • 2 each bay leaf
  • pinch salt
  • pinch cayenne

Place all the ingredients in a heavy bottomed sauce pot. Turn the heat to high,  cover

tightly and simmer for 15 minutes. Lower the heat to medium-high, remove the cover and continue cooking for about 45 minutes, stirring occasionally. As the liquid starts to thicken, lower the heat and stir with a wooden spoon until it is almost all evaporated. Allow to cool. Taste and add salt if needed. Store in a glass jar in the refrigerator. You can serve this warm or cold.

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