Give your burger an extra kick

Published 4:49 pm Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Have fun creating this new classic for you family!

It’s a great change from the classic burger and everyone will love it.

Hamburgers and Cheeseburgers comprise 71 percent of the beef servings in commercial restaurants and account for 40 percent of all sandwiches sold.

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8.2 Billion burgers were served in commercial restaurants in 2001 and Americans eat about 13 billion hamburgers a year. If you put all those burgers in a straight line, they would circle the earth more than 32 times.

Americans currently spend about $134 billion dollars per year on fast food –

more than they spend on college education, computers, software or new cars.

Chicken Cordon Bleu Burgers

2 teaspoons vegetable or olive oil, plus more for drizzling

4 slices Canadian bacon

2 pounds ground chicken breast

2 teaspoons sweet paprika, eyeball it in your palm

2 teaspoons poultry seasoning

2 teaspoons grill seasoning blend (recommended: Montreal Steak Seasoning) or salt and pepper

1 shallot, finely chopped

4 deli slices Swiss cheese

2/3 cup mayonnaise, eyeball it

3 rounded tablespoons Dijon mustard

2 tablespoons freshly chopped tarragon leaves, 4 sprigs

8 leaves leaf lettuce

1 vine ripe tomato, thinly sliced

4 kaiser rolls or sandwich size sourdough English muffins, split and toasted

Preheat grill pan, non-stick griddle, large no-stick skillet or table-top electric grill to medium high heat. Add 2 tablespoons of oil and Canadian bacon.

Warm bacon and caramelize it at edges, 1 to 2 minutes on each side.

Remove to a piece of foil. Fold foil over loosely to keep warm. Combine chicken, paprika, poultry seasoning, grill seasoning and shallot. Score meat with the side of your hand to separate into four equal amounts.

Make four large patties, three-quarters to 1 inch thick. Drizzle patties with oil and place on hot grill pan, griddle or in skillet. Cook 5 minutes on each side until chicken is cooked through.

Top patties with reserved cooked Canadian bacon and Swiss cheese.

Fold each slice of cheese in half to fit the burger. Cover loosely with tin foil.

Turn off pan and let cheese melt, 2 minutes. Combine mayonnaise, mustard, tarragon. Slather bun tops or English tops with sauce.

Place Cordon Bleu burgers on bun bottoms and top with lettuce and tomato.

Put bun or muffin tops in place. Serve with oven fries. Makes four burgers.