Opa Burgers

This burger was the winning "alternative" burger from the same competition as my other insanely good burgers I blogged about the other day. These were super juicy and moist from the lamb, and had a salty an tangy bite from the olives and feta. Although I'm usually not a huge fan of olives, they balanced out the overall flavor of the burger and I don't think the taste would've been the same without it. So, if you plan on making the burger, I wouldn't skip the olives. Try them for your next burger night. Opa!

Opa Burgers
Adapted from Food Network
2 servings

For the mayonnaise/cheese mixture:
• 2 tbs mayonnaise
• 1 tbs roasted red peppers, chopped
• 2 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
• 2 tbs chopped kalamata olives
For the patties:
• 1/4 cup Shiraz (recommended: Sutter Home )
• 1/8-ounce dried porcini mushrooms = to 0.01 oz
• 1/2 pound ground lamb*
• 1 cloves garlic, minced
• 1/8 teaspoon dried oregano
• 1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
• 1/2 teaspoons salt
• 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
• Extra-virgin olive oil, for brushing grill rack (recommended: Colavita)
• 2 Italian-style bolo rolls or ciabatta rolls or other rustic buns, split
• 4 thin slices sopressata, Italian salami variety
• 1/4 cup loosely packed baby spinach leaves
• 2 large tomato slices

Prepare a medium-hot fire in a charcoal grill with a cover, or preheat a gas grill to medium-high.
For the mayonnaise-cheese mixture:
Combine the mayonnaise and roasted peppers in a small bowl and mix well. Cover and chill until ready to use.
In a separate small bowl, mash the cheese with a fork. Stir in the olives; set aside.
For the patties:
Pour the wine into a small, heavy fire-proof saucepan and heat on the grill until the wine begins to simmer. Remove from the heat and add the dried mushrooms, stirring with a fork to ensure that all the mushrooms are moistened. Set the mushrooms aside to reconstitute for at least 30 minutes.
Gently squeeze the excess liquid from the reconstituted mushrooms and chop, using a chef's knife. Transfer to a large bowl. Add the lamb, garlic, oregano, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper. Form into 2 equal patties in the shape of the rolls.
When the grill is ready, brush the grill rack with oil. Place the patties on the grill, cover, and cook for 4 minutes. With a spatula, turn the patties over, and cook an additional 4 minutes, or until done to preference. During the last few minutes of grilling, place the rolls, cut side down, on outer edges of grill to lightly toast.
To assemble the burgers, spread the mayonnaise mixture over the bottom roll halves and the cheese mixture over the top halves. Layer the bottom rolls with the patties, sopressata, spinach leaves, tomato slices, and roll tops.

*If you cannot find ground lamb, ask your butcher to ground lamb shoulder