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Playing Hearty Paprika Burgers


  • 2 large red bell peppers
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1/2 cup onion, finely chopped
  • 3 large cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1/8 cup white vermouth or dry white wine
  • 1 1/2 pounds ground beef or ground beef, pork and veal mix
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 tablespoons sweet paprika
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh or 1 teaspoon dried marjoram
  • 1 teaspoon hot paprika or chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1 tablespoon EVOO Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 8 slices Gruyre, Swiss, Gouda or smoked Gouda
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1/3 cup ketchup
  • 3 tablespoons pickle relish
  • 2 teaspoons hot sauce
  • Seeded potato hamburger rolls, lightly toasted or buttered and grilled
  • Toppings: bread-and-butter pickle slices, lettuce leaves and thinly sliced red onion


Serves: 4


Broil the bell peppers until blackened and blistered. Let cool, then peel, seed and slice into fat strips.

In a small skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic, and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Pour in the vermouth (or white wine) and stir up any browned bits. Let cool.

Place the ground meat in a bowl; season with salt and pepper. Mix in the onion-garlic mixture, the sweet paprika, marjoram, hot paprika (or chili powder) and allspice. Form 4 large patties, making them thinner at the centers and thicker at the edges for even cooking.

In a large skillet, heat the EVOO, 1 turn of the pan, over medium-high heat. Add the patties and cook, turning once, for 8 minutes for medium. Add the cheese in the last minute of cooking, tenting loosely with foil to melt.

In a small bowl, make a sauce by stirring together the sour cream, ketchup, relish, hot sauce, salt and pepper.

On the roll bottoms, layer the patties, roasted peppers, pickles, lettuce and onion. Slather the sauce on the roll tops and set in place.