Thursday, September 3, 2009

Marsala Burgers

This hasn't been a very good summer for grilling, at least in my opinion.  It pretty much rained through July, and then gave way to humidity of evil, tortuous levels.  On those days, the idea of stepping outside for 10 seconds longer than absolutely necessary was pretty much ruled out.
So when I found this yummy-sounding burger recipe on Smells Like Home, I was excited to make a burger that didn't require a shower afterwards.
These were different from any burger I've had, but I really enjoyed them.  They felt almost like a gourmet or upscale kind of patty, and I liked that.  The only issues I ran into were my own fault; I made the burgers a little too thick, so they didn't cook all the way through.  Of course, I didn't notice this until the part when you put them back in the pan, so they had to hang out there a little longer than I wanted - which in turn made the marsala sauce reduce a bit too much.  But the flavor was fabulous, and now I know for next time!

  • 12 oz ground beef (85%/15% works well here) or ground chuck
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 large shallot, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, smashed
  • 2 ounces assorted mushrooms, sliced
  • 3/4 cup sweet Marsala
  • 1/2 cup low-sodium beef broth
  • 1 fresh rosemary sprig
  • 4 oz sharp cheddar cheese
  • crusty French bread baguette
Heat a cast iron skillet over medium high heat.

Shape the ground beef into 4 oblong patties, about 4 inches long each. Drizzle the patties with a little olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper; repeat on the opposite sides. Cut the french bread into pieces a little shorter than each of the patties and set aside.

Brown the patties in the skillet on both sides until the burgers are medium rare. Transfer the burgers to a plate and keep warm; leave the juices in the pan.

Melt 1 tablespoon of butter and 1/2 tablespoon of oil in the skillet. Add the shallot and garlic. Sauté until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add another 1/2 tablespoon of the olive oil, if necessary. Add the mushrooms and sauté until tender and the juices evaporate, about 3 minutes. Season with salt. Add the Marsala. Simmer until the Marsala reduces by half, about 2 minutes. Add the broth and the rosemary sprig. Simmer until reduced by half, about 4 minutes. Return the burgers to the skillet. Cook burgers until they are medium, turning to coat, about 1 minute. Season the sauce with salt and pepper, to taste. Add 1 oz of cheese to the top of each burger and cover the pan to allow the cheese to melt, about 2 minutes.

When the cheese has melted, remove the burgers from the pan and place on the French bread. Top the burgers with Marsala sauce and then the top of the French bread. Serve hot.


  1. Made these tonight. So good. Doubled the sauce and plan to eat it with pasta tomorrow. Your photos make us want to try all the recipes you blog about.

  2. i made these recently, with ground turkey, and they were so good. i'm looking forward to making them again soon!


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