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A foolproof way to create great- tasting summer meals is to focus on fresh, seasonal ingredients. “Foods that are in season have the most flavor, most nutrition, and are the least expensive-win-win-win!” says Emmy nominated celebrity Chef Nathan Lyon. “The best part about cooking in the warm summer months is that all of the great produce on offer, namely fruit, is best prepared in salads, cold soups, juices, smoothies, etc., so there’s no need to sweat in the kitchen.”
Here, Lyon shares a crowd-pleasing recipe from his book Great Food Starts Fresh that captures the essence of summer and features local, seasonal ingredients. If you don’t like blue cheese, Lyon suggests trying aged cheddar. And use organic, grass-fed beef if possible. For more seasonal recipes, see The Perfect Summer Menu.
Grilled Hamburger with Tomato Mostarda, Arugula, and Blue Cheese
- To make mostarda: Put tomatoes, vinegar, salt, pepper, sugar, tomato paste, and mustard in food processor, and pulse until tomatoes are broken down. Transfer the contents to large saucepan, add bay leaves, and bring liquid to a boil. Reduce heat to medium, and cook, stirring occasionally, 30 minutes.
- After 30 minutes, begin stirring more frequently until mostarda thickens and very little liquid remains, approximately 15 minutes more. Remove from heat, and take out bay leaves. Taste, and add more vinegar and/or salt and pepper, if desired. Mixture should taste bright, sweet, and vibrant, like ketchup. Allow to cool before serving.
- To make burger: Heat grill to medium-high. Once hot, clean grill, then, using tongs, lightly dip a cloth in olive oil and wipe to coat grill rack.
- In large bowl, gently mix to combine meat, shallot, salt, and pepper. Do not overmix. Form into 6 patties; using your thumb or the back of a tablespoon, gently press into the middle of each burger. This small indentation will ensure that the center doesn’t puff up as the burger cooks.
- For medium-rare burgers: Grill patties 3 minutes on one side, with grill lid closed, until nicely colored. Flip patties, close lid, and cook 3 minutes more. Transfer to sheet pan to rest. (Adjust cooking times per side for desired doneness.)
- While burgers are resting, place hamburger buns face down on grill until lightly toasted. Assemble burgers, adding mostarda, cheese, and arugula to taste.
- Calories 483
- Carbohydrate Content 42 g
- Cholesterol Content 84 mg
- Fat Content 21 g
- Fiber Content 3 g
- Protein Content 30 g
- Saturated Fat Content 9 g
- Sodium Content 1628 mg
- Sugar Content 19 g