Spring has sprung! Time to fire up the grill and cook some burgers. But not just any ordinary burger. Try an open-faced burger named after the classic tomato/basil/mozzarella salad with the same flavor profile. But if you purchase the pesto instead of making it at home, select it from the refrigerated section of the grocery store. It will have a much fresher taste.


  • 12 oz. ground round
  • 12 oz. bulk mild Italian sausage
  • ½ cup homemade or purchased pesto, divided use
  • 8 slices fresh mozzarella
  • 4 slices rosemary-flavored Italian baguette
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 8 thin slices tomato, seasoned with salt & pepper
  • fresh basil leaves


  1. Preheat outdoor grill to medium. Brush grill grate with oil. Combine ground round, Italian sausage, and ¼ cup pesto; divide and shape into four oval patties.
  2. Grill patties, covered, until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center of the patties registers 160-degrees, approx. 6 minutes per side.
  3. Top each burger with 2 slices of mozzarella and grill until melted, about 2 minutes more. Transfer burgers to a plate, tent with foil, and let rest 3 minutes. (Note: These burgers can also be cooked in a grill pan on top of the stove.)
  4. Brush baguette slices with oil and grill until toasted, about 1 minute per side. Spread remaining ¼ cup pesto on the grilled baguette slices, then top with burgers and tomato slices. Garnish with fresh basil. Makes 4 servings.

Source: Cuisine Tonight (Weeknight Menus), Issue 117, June 2016

Barbara Walch

Barbara Walch joined the staff of Plano Profile in August 1986 and currently serves as Food Editor and Associate Publisher, Community Relations. In addition to writing Dining In, a monthly food feature,...