Thursday, June 17, 2010

Caesar Salad and Flank Steak Burgers with Garlic Crostini for the Blogger Burger Club

After several posts of vegetarian and fish dishes, it seems high time to bring in some beef--and in what better form than a burger?! Especially when that burger is a delectable Caesar Salad and Flank Steak Burgers with Garlic Crostini, this month's pick for the Blogger Burger Club. Started by my friend Reeni of Cinnamon Spice & Everything Nice, a couple of months ago, I had been meaning to join in the burger making and rating event. When this month's host turned out to be my friend Kim from Stirring the Pot, and then she picked a burger featuring Caesar salad as a key ingredient, I knew it was time to take action.

This burger is made from ground flank steak--new for me as I usually use grass-fed beef or bison for my burgers. It is served on a thick garlic toast or crostini and topped with Caesar salad and freshly grated or shaved Parmesan cheese. The only change I made to the recipe was to use a bakery loaf of Artisan Asiago Cheese Bread in place of the sourdough.

Caesar Salad and Flank Steak Burgers with Garlic Crostini
Adapted from "Build a Better Burger"
(Makes 4 large meal-sized burgers)
Estimated Time: 30-40 minutes

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1-1/2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
3/4 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
2 flat anchovy fillets packed in oil, drained and chopped
2 garlic cloves, chopped
2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

1-1/2 pounds ground flank steak
1/2 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
2 shallots, minced
3 garlic cloves, minced
3 tablespoons Zinfandel (or other red wine or beef broth)
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon lemon pepper seasoning
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Olive oil, for brushing the grill rack

Garlic Crostini:
8 (1/2 inch-thick) sourdough bread slices
Extra virgin olive oil, for brushing on the bread
4 garlic cloves, peeled and halved

You will also need:
1-1/2 cups washed, dried, and shredded romaine lettuce
Shredded, freshly grated or shaved Parmesan cheese to taste

Prepare a medium-hot fire in a charcoal grill with a cover, or preheat a gas grill to medium high.

To make the dressing, combine the olive oils, vinegars, and salt in a small jar with a lid and shake until well blended. Mash the anchovy fillets and garlic together on a cutting board until they form a paste; transfer to a bowl. Add the oil and vinegar mixture, lemon juice, and parsley and whisk until smooth. Set aside.

To make the patties, combine the steak, parsley, shallots, garlic, Zinfandel, salt, lemon pepper seasoning, and pepper in a large bowl. Handling the meat as little as possible to avoid compacting it, mix well. Divide the mixture into 4 equal portions and form the portions into patties to fit the bread slices.

When the grill is ready, brush the grill rack with olive oil. Place the patties on the rack, cover, and cook, turning once, until done to preference 5-7 minutes on each side for medium. During the last few minutes of cooking, to make the crostini, brush the bread slices to taste with olive oil on both sides. Place the bread slices on the outer edges of the rack, turning once to toast lightly. Remove and rub each side of the toast with 1/2 garlic clove.

To assemble the burgers, combine the lettuce and the dressing in a large bowl and toss lightly. On 4 of the bread slices, place an equal portion of the salad, a patty and a generous sprinkling of Parmesan cheese. Top with the remaining slices and serve.

Notes/Results: Yum! This is an excellent burger--very juicy and a ton of flavor. Have plenty of napkins and maybe a set of silverware at the ready when enjoying it. I liked the tenderness of the ground flank, although for the cost here to buy it and have it ground, I will probably stick to my favorite ground bison because the ground flank was almost twice the price at Whole Foods. (The only (nearby) store willing and able to grind it for me.) The cost did make the burger a bit of an indulgence--but it was worth it. The bread was really good--I wanted it to be on the softer side when it was toasted and it was--plus the asiago cheese flavor was a nice extra. The salad had a nice garlicky level in the dressing and it and the Parmesan, grated on my microplane for maximum volume and "fluff" made the burger extra-special.

This was one of the best burgers I have made lately, so I am going to give it a rating of 3 1/2 stars. (Out of 4 possible stars.) It is something I will likely make again. For the Blogger Burger Club event Kim will be averaging out the ratings and rounding up the burgers after the 20th on her site (here), so go by and check it out.

Thanks to Kim for hosting this month (and for picking such a great burger!) and to Reeni for coming up with this fun event.

BTW: If you are as crazy for Caesar salads as I am, another wonderful salad-inspired sandwich is this BLT with Caesar Mayo that I made last year. Making this burger got me craving these delicious sandwiches again! ;-)


  1. This burger is so incredibly decadent! Definitely an indulgence, but an awesome one.

  2. That's so funny - last night I had some beef mince and I was wondering what to do with it and thought "Hey, I wonder what a burger on garlic crostini would be like?". But I made bolognaise instead.

  3. That is a gorgeous burger!

  4. I'm sorry, I'm not even going to pretend I read a word of this post as my head just plonked on to my desk in sheer delicious wonderment. That is stunning!

  5. Your burger looks delicious, Deb! Love that Parmesan fluff;-)

    I agree as far as the ground flank steak goes. It was fun to work with and it was definitely tender, but it was almost double the price here too.

    I like that you used the asiago cheese bread (that is one of my favorite breads)!

    Thanks so much for playing along and making the burger.

  6. Seeing your burger makes me want it again. Such a wonderful indulgence! The bread you used sounds like a good idea. Thanks for taking part!

  7. Deb, what a delicious idea for a burger. Sounds scrumptious.

  8. what an incredible burger!! the bread looks so good and caesar sounds perfect for the flank steak burger!


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