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Stuffed Burgers

Prep time: none Cook time: none Serves: 4 1/2-lb burgers.The Burgers:
2 lbs ground beef (coarse ground chuck, if possible)
1 Tbs plus 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1 cup stuffing mix (see recipes below)
1 Tbs olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

The Stuffings:

Cheddar Cheese and Bacon
3/4 cup shredded orange cheddar cheese
4 oz thickly sliced slab bacon (about 6 slices), fried until almost crisp and cut into small pieces

Monterey Jack Cheese and Green Chile
3/4 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1/4 cup diced mild green chiles (canned)

Swiss Cheese and Mushroom
1/2 cup shredded Swiss cheese
1/2 lb mushrooms, cleaned, trimmed, and sauteed until golden brown (about 3/4 cups cooked)

Buttermilk Dressing
1 cup mayonnaise
1 cup buttermilk
1 garlic clove, finely minced
1 tsp Dijon mustard
2 Tbs chopped chives
2 Tbs finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
1/4 tsp kosher or coarse salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper 1. Preheat oven to 350º F. Place beef and Worcestershire sauce in a large bowl. Mix gently just to combine and shape into eight 4-ounce patties.

2. Place about 1/4 cup of stuffing in the center of each patty, close with a second patty, and seal edges.

3. In a large, heavy ovenproof skillet, heat olive oil until hot but not smoking. Drain excess oil. Add burgers and sear on each side for 2 to 3 minutes.

4. Place skillet directly in the oven and continue cooking the burgers (about 8 minutes for rare, 10 for medium-rare). Remove from oven and salt, pepper, and serve burgers. Makes 4 1/2-lb burgers.

The Stuffings:

Cheddar Cheese and Bacon
Combine cheddar cheese and bacon and separate into 4 equal portions, a generous 1/4 cup each.

Monterey Jack Cheese and Green Chile
Combine Monterey Jack cheese and green chiles and separate into 4 equal portions, a generous 1/4 cup each.

Swiss Cheese and Mushroom
Combine Swiss cheese and mushrooms and separate into 4 equal portions, a generous 1/4 cup each.

Buttermilk Dressing
Whisk all the ingredients together in a medium-size mixing bowl until they are completely blended. Serve immediately or refrigerate until ready to serve. Makes 2 cups. none

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