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Mini Burgers with Pimento Cheese

Mini Burgers with Pimento Cheese
A specialty of the American South, pimento cheese is affectionately known as Carolina Caviar or Southern Paté. It is made by combining shredded cheddar cheese with minced pimentos, mayonnaise, a touch of cayenne and other seasonings, although recipes often vary among Southern cooks. For best results, use a high-quality, extra-sharp cheddar.

Ingredients:

  • 4 oz. extra-sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 1 jar (4 oz.) pimentos, drained and finely
      minced
  • 1 1/2 Tbs. finely chopped green onions, white
      and green portions
  • 1 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • Pinch of black pepper
  • 2 Tbs. mayonnaise
  • 1 1/4 lb. ground beef
  • 12 Parker House rolls, each 2 inches wide,
      warmed
  • Lettuce leaves, sliced tomatoes or other favorite
      burger accompaniments
  • French fries for serving (see related recipe at
      right)

Directions:

In a bowl, combine the cheddar cheese, pimentos, green onions, 1/2 tsp. of the salt, the cayenne and black pepper. Stir in the mayonnaise until incorporated. Refrigerate the pimento cheese until ready to use.

In a bowl, combine the ground beef and the remaining 1 tsp. salt. Divide into 12 equal portions and gently form into balls. Using a mini burger press, shape the balls into patties.

Heat a nonstick grill pan over medium-high heat. Working in batches, cook the burgers for 1 to 2 minutes, then flip them. Spoon the pimento cheese onto the burgers and cook for 1 to 2 minutes more, or until done to your liking.

Serve the burgers immediately on Parker House rolls with your favorite burger accompaniments and French fries. Serves 4.
Williams-Sonoma Kitchen.