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Sirloin Patty Melt with Balsamic Figs, Onions & Brie

If you’ve never had a patty melt, it’s what happens when a cheeseburger and a grilled cheese have a baby.  It’s a cheese burger served on (usually) thick sliced & grilled bread, dripping with cheese, and topped with caramelized onions.  Before competing on Cooks vs. Cons, I’d never had one.  I knew the principle, but had never actually eaten one.  Now that I have done the show, I love them and I’m not sure why I ever waited so long to try one.

After competing on back in April,  several friends asked for the recipes I made on the show, so here ya go!!!


1 large onion (White or Spanish)
2 TBSP butter
1 TBSP fig preserves
1 TBSP balsamic vinegar
¼ c. cinnamon apple chips–chopped
Salt & Pepper

1 lb. ground sirloin
3 slices bacon
1 tsp salt
½ tsp ground black pepper
½ tsp garlic powder
A few dashes of Worcestershire

Beer Glaze
12 oz. bottle of stout
2/3 c. sugar
1 TBSP butter


Thick Cut Sourdough or Italian Bread


Melt butter in a nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add julienned onions and apples. Cook over medium heat for 10-15 minutes or until the onions begin to brown and the apples soften. Add balsamic vinegar and fig preserves.  Stir to combine.  Remove from heat, ready for patty melt assembly.

**The judges nailed me for “leathery” apples, so I suggest using fresh apples.

In a medium sized sauce pan, combine beer, sugar, and butter. Bring to a boil and reduce heat to medium and allow to boil without boiling over. Continue reducing for 10-12 minutes. Remove from heat.

**After the show, it hit me that I should have put a cinnamon stick into the beer glaze, so feel free to toss in a cinnamon stick while the beer cooks.

In a bowl, combine all burger ingredients using hands. Form into 4 equally sized patties. Heat a cast iron skillet drizzled with olive oil. Sear burgers for 1-2 minutes. Flip and glaze burgers with beer reduction. Continue cooking burgers for another minute. Flip and glaze one more time.

To assemble patty melt
Melt 1 TBSP butter in a nonstick skillet or griddle. Butter one side of each slice of sourdough bread. Place a slice of sourdough bread into the skillet (butter side down) Place slices of brie to cover bread. Top with a glazed patty. Top with fig-onion mixture. Add another few thin slices of brie. Top with second slice of bread and grill over medium-low heat until toasted, flipping once.


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