Saturday, March 26, 2011

Italian Burgers

This is my best friend Stef's recipe and one of my family's favorites.  We made it on a senior high mission trip with our church to Gulfport, MS to do Hurricane Katrina relief.  Stef was a cook for that trip with my husband and me.  She has since moved three hours away, and every time I make this dish, I think of her and all the fun we had together on that trip.

Makes 4 burgers (1/4 lb. each)

*1 lb. lean ground beef (we use 96/4)
*1 small jar of spaghetti sauce--you'll need 1/3 cup + some to pour over each burger at the end (I just use Prego Traditional--you don't need anything fancy for this recipe.  The burgers speak for themselves.)
*3 Tablespoons onion, finely chopped
*4 slices Provolone or reduced-fat Mozzarella cheese
*4 wheat hamburger buns or 8 slices Italian bread

Preheat oven to broil.  Pour all of the spaghetti sauce, except for 1/3 cup, into a small saucepan.  Cook on low to warm the sauce.

Meanwhile, mix beef, the reserved 1/3 cup spaghetti sauce, and onion in a medium bowl.  Form into 4 patties.

Place patties on a roasting pan filled with some water on the bottom to catch the grease drippings.  Broil approximately 3 inches from heat for 6 minutes.  Turn patties.  Broil 6 more minutes.  Top each patty with a slice of cheese and broil just until cheese is melted and the beef is cooked.  (Since there is spaghetti sauce in the patties, it will look a little pink even when it is well-done.  12 minutes should produce a well-done burger.)  Remove patties from oven.

Place hamburger buns or Italian bread slices on a cookie sheet.  We spray each slice with I Can't Believe It's Not Butter spray.  Broil just until lightly toasted, watching it carefully so that the bread does not burn. 

Place a hamburger patty on a piece of bread.  Top with some spaghetti sauce and then another slice of bread.