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The Ultimate Salami Burgers


  • 1 1/4 pounds 80-percent ground beef

  • 3/4 pound ground pork

  • 1/3 cup dry red wine

  • 1/2 onion

  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano or marjoram

  • 2 large cloves garlic, finely grated or minced

  • 1 fresh chili pepper, finely chopped, or 2 teaspoons red pepper flakes

  • A handful of grated Pecorino cheese

  • Freshly ground pepper

  • Extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), for drizzling

  • Salt

  • 8 slices hard salami or Genoa salami (sliced not too thin)

  • 4 slices provolone cheese (sliced not too thin)

  • 1 cup giardiniera (Italian pickled vegetables), drained and finely chopped or pulsed in a food processor

  • 4 large Kaiser rolls or 12 small sliders rolls

For the Quick Marinara Sauce:

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)

  • 2 cloves garlic, grated or minced

  • 1 fresh chili pepper, finely chopped

  • 1/4 onion, grated

  • 1/4 cup dry red wine

  • 1 can crushed tomatoes (14 ounces)

  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano or marjoram

  • A few fresh basil leaves, lightly torn

  • A few sprigs of fresh thyme, leaves stripped and finely chopped

  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper


Pre-heat the oven to 350°F.

Put the ground beef and pork in a large bowl and douse with the wine. Grate 3-4 tablespoons onion directly into the bowl to catch the juices. Add the oregano, garlic, chili pepper, cheese, 1 tablespoon pepper and a drizzle of EVOO. Mix until just combined. Shape into four large patties or twelve small patties for sliders.

Make an indentation in the center of each patty to help them cook evenly and prevent them from puffing up. Sprinkle with a little salt.

Arrange the salami slices on a cooling rack set over a rimmed baking sheet. Bake until they crisp up a bit, about 10 minutes. Let cool.

Heat a heavy griddle or cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. Add the patties and cook, turning occasionally, about 10 minutes for regular size and 6 minutes for sliders. Top with the provolone and cook until melted.

Spread some of the giardiniera relish on the bottom halves of the rolls and top with the patties. Top with the salami and some Quick Marinara Sauce (instructions below). Cover with the top halves of the rolls. To make the Quick Marinara Sauce, heat the EVOO in a small pot over medium to medium-high heat. Add the garlic, chili pepper and onion and cook, stirring, 1-2 minutes. Add the wine and cook for 30 seconds. Add the tomatoes, oregano, basil and thyme. Season with salt and pepper. Simmer over low heat until thickened.