Chained Italian Hamburgers, or Double Bacon Burgers: Hamburger Incatenati

American-style fast food has become quite popular in Italy, and it’s only natural that Italians should begin making hamburgers at home too. This clearly derives from some of the things one gets from the takeout window, but builds nicely upon the concept.

  • 1 1/3 pounds (600 g) ground beef, shaped into 8 thin hamburger patties
  • 8 thin slices of flat pancetta  (it looks similar to bacon, which would work if need be)
  • 1/4 pound Swiss cheese or Fontina, thinly sliced and then chopped
  • A medium onion, peeled and finely sliced
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Wooden toothpicks
  • 4 hamburger buns, split and toasted, or 8 slices toasted whole wheat bread

Heat a non-stick pan and quickly brown the pancetta, removing it and cooling it before the pieces have become so crisp that they will shatter when bent.

Heat the butter in the skillet, and simmer the sliced onion for 7-8 minutes, stirring it occasionally. You want it to become golden, but not brown.

Lay four of the burgers on your work surface and distribute the onions and the cheese evenly over them.

Cover with the remaining patties and press down to help join them together. Wrap each burger with two slices of the pancetta, using toothpicks to hold them in place.

Grill the burgers until the meat is done and the cheese has melted, flipping them carefully to keep from tearing the pancetta.

Carefully remove the toothpicks, put the burgers in the buns, and serve at once with a tossed salad and potato chips. A wine? Something zesty, and I might go with Bonarda or a Lambrusco di Sorbara.

More about Svizzere, Italian hamburgers, and other recipes.

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Categories: Beef & Veal Steaks, Braciole, and More

Author:Cosa Bolle in Pentola

Italy boasts an astonishing number of varietals, denominations, and wines, and tremendous changes are sweeping the land. New wines are being created, new DOCs are being introduced, and the existing denominations are overhauling their regulations both to reflect the practices adopted by their member wineries and to favor improvements in quality. Even the most staid and stolid region can flower seemingly overnight, emerging with exciting new wines and wineries that require rewriting the enological maps and rethinking one's positions. And, of course, recipes too, because cuisine and wine are closely intertwined and it's difficult to imagine one without the other.

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