by James McNair
Each summer, thousands of cooks-both amateur and professional-compete in the Build a Better Burger recipe contest, a winner-takes-all national cook-off at Sutter Home Family Vineyards in Napa Valley. In this collection marking the 15th anniversary of the cook-off, best-selling cookbook author James McNair presents a mouth-watering look at the contest, including each of the 44 recipes that have won awards since Build a Better Burger began.
An impressive list of culinary professionals—from Thomas Keller and Mark Miller to Marion Cunningham and Arthur Schwartz (and including Global Gourmet's own Kate Heyhoe)—have judged the BBB cook-off over the years. Twelve former judges, including Bruce Aidells, Cindy Pawlcyn, and Sheila Lukins also share their creative burger recipes in Build a Better Burger.
Some of the innovative and tasty burgers, representing the best of the more than 50,000 contest entries since 1990, are Tuscan Burgers Bruschetta, Mustard-Grilled Lamb Burgers with Grilled Eggplant Salsa, Hawaiian Tuna Burgers with Maui Wowee Salsa, Casablanca Burgers with Citrus-Olive Relish and Harissa Aioli, Cubana Pork Burgers, and San Francisco Cioppino Burgers.
To complement the burgers, Jeffrey Starr, Sutter Home's culinary director and executive chef, suggests a wine match for each one and offers general burger-and-wine pairing tips. The winning recipes in Build a Better Burger prove that American ingenuity is alive and well when it comes to building the perfect burger.
Go to www.buildabetterburger.com for more information on this year's contest.
About the Author
James McNair has served as the head judge of Build a Better Burger since it began in 1990, heading both the regional selection process and the cook-off judging; he is now the chairman of the national contest. The author of more than forty cookbooks, he has received an Award of Excellence from the International Association of Culinary Professionals. McNair teaches cooking classes and gives culinary lectures around the country and has appeared on many national television shows. He lives in Napa Valley.
Build a Better Burger
Celebrating Sutter Home's Annual Search for America's Best Burgers
by James McNair
Ten Speed Press
$17.95; Paperback, 208 pages
Information provided by the publisher.
This page created September 2005
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