Wisconsin Brie and Cranberry Burgers



by Sara at Sprouted Kitchen

I love feeding people. I enjoy the whole process of collecting ingredients, the creativity in combining flavors, the science of how heat changes food’s texture, watching the expressions of people you love having their hunger satisfied, and then sitting there, with bellies full, and talking about life. Every part of it is so gratifying in its own way. A majority of you are food people (I’d go as far to say all of you are food people), so this sentiment is likely one we have in common. People are happy when they eat good food, and I like to make people happy. – Sara of Sprouted Kitchen

We came up with this burger recipe while trying to put an essence of sweet, salty, and creamy into one burger. The recipe that follows is a balance of just that. This burger really can be enjoyed during any season, as dried cranberries and scallions are typically found year-round – though scallions are fresh nationwide right now – find them at your local farmers’ market! A few more tips: If you can find a sourdough bun, you’ll get a nice tang that goes along with the creaminess of the Brie cheese here. For a spicy kick, add a teaspoon of horseradish to your cranberry/scallion spread – again, a complement to all the burger’s components. Lastly, it’s always better to undercook the burger a bit, whether in a skillet or on the grill – it will continue to cook through as it rests for a minute under the foil. Happy National Burger Month!

Wisconsin Brie & Cranberry Burgers

2/3 lb. grass-fed beef
1/3 cup dried cranberries, soaked in hot water
1/2 cup sliced scallions
1 teaspoon grapeseed oil (optional)
4 slices Wisconsin Brie cheese
2–4 full leaves butter lettuce (or any soft green of choice)
2 fresh buns
Dijon mustard

Put a cast iron skillet in the oven at 450 degrees to heat through. (This step is not necessary if you are using any other pan/skillet, and of course you can grill the burgers!) Divide the beef into two 1/3-lb. patties. Shape them to be about 1/2-inch thick. (Keep in mind that they will shrink when cooked.) Sprinkle with salt and pepper on both sides.

Drain the cranberries and mix with the scallions; set aside. If you’re using a cast iron pan coming from the oven, you can start working right away. Otherwise, heat the pan over medium-high heat on the stove. Add grapeseed oil and allow it to heat up a couple minutes. Add one patty at a time, and sear on each side for three minutes.

In the meantime, put the buns in the toaster, toaster oven, or on the grill. Flip the burger, and sear another minute. Add the Wisconsin Brie, let it melt a minute, and remove the burger from the heat. Cover with foil and allow it to sit for two minutes. (This timing yields a medium-cooked burger in a hot cast iron pan. Vary your timing if you prefer it cooked more or less.) While the burger rests, add your desired amount of mustard and mayo on the buns.

To assemble: bottom bun + butter lettuce + burger with softened cheese + cranberry and scallion mix + top bun.

Other creamy, soft-ripened Wisconsin Cheeses to try with this recipe: Camembert and Les Frères.