- 1 large beefsteak tomato, halved crosswise and seeded
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil, plus more for rubbing
- 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon smoked sweet paprika
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 small garlic clove, chopped
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Hot sauce
- 1/2 pound sliced bacon, coarsely chopped and frozen for 15 minutes
- 1 pound ground beef chuck
- Butter, for spreading
- 4 sesame-topped hamburger buns, split and toasted
- 4 thick slices of sweet onion
- Preheat the oven to 425°. Put the tomato in a small baking dish and rub with oil. Turn the halves cut side down and bake for 20 minutes, until they start to soften. Let cool, then peel and chop the tomato. Transfer to a blender; add the vinegar, paprika, tomato paste, garlic, sugar and the 1/4 cup of oil and blend. Season with salt, pepper and hot sauce.
- In a food processor, pulse the bacon until very finely chopped. In a large bowl, using your hands, blend the ground chuck with the bacon. Form the mixture into 4 patties.
- Heat a large skillet. Season the burgers with salt and pepper and cook over moderate heat until well-browned on the outside and barely pink in the center, 4 minutes per side. Butter the buns and place an onion slice on the bottom halves. Top with the burgers and some dressing, close the burgers and serve.
Although these burgers could easily go with a big red, like Zinfandel or Syrah, McMillan always opts for a red Burgundy. He loves the 2008 Domaine Dublère Volnay 1er Cru Les Pitures. Also try the 2009 Les Faverelles Le Nez de Muse Bourgogne Rouge.