Brie, Pancetta and Gingered-Bourbon Poached Pear Burger

2 pounds ground beef
1 teaspoon Seasoned Salt
1 tablespoon onion powder
1 tablespoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon ground black pepper
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
Oil for brushing the burgers

For the Poached Pears

24 ounces ginger ale
¼ cup bourbon
1 cinnamon stick
2 pears,peeled, cored and cut in half lengthwise
½ pound pancetta, cooked until desire crispiness
8 ounces Brie cheese, sliced
2 cups fresh arugula
6 burger buns, split and toasted (I used Brioche burger buns)
Condiments as desired

Make the Poached Pears

In a small saucepan combine the ginger ale, bourbon and cinnamon stick. Bring the mixture to a simmer over medium heat. Add the pears and simmer gently for about 15-20 minutes, turning occasionally until the pears are tender.
You can let the pears cool in the simmering liquid or if press for time, remove the pears immediately. Cut the pears into thin slices. Reserve.

Make and Cook the Burgers:

In a large bowl combine the ground beef, season salt, onion powder, garlic powder, ground black pepper and Dijon mustard. Gently mix to combine taking care not to compress the ingredients.
Divide the meat into 6 even portions (6 – ounces each) and form into pucks. Do not overwork the meat.
With your fingers make a shallow indentation on the center of each patty, this will prevent the burger from bulging while cooking.

If using a Grill:

Build a charcoal fire until the coals glow bright orange and ash over or heat a gas grill to high. Brush the burgers with oil. Place the burgers on the grill and cook for about 3-4 minutes or until golden brown and lightly charred on the first side. With a spatula flip over the burgers and cook for another 4 minutes for medium rare. Cook longer for well done.
Top the burgers with cheese on the last minute of cooking and cover the grill to melt the cheese.

If using a Grill Pan:

Heat a grill pan over high heat. Cook the burgers as directed above. Top the burgers with cheese on the last minute of cooking and cover the grill pan with aluminum foil to melt the cheese.

If using a Sautee Pan or Griddle:

Heat about 1 tablespoon of oil over high heat. Place the burgers on the grill and cook for about 3-4 minutes or until golden brown and lightly charred on the first side. With a spatula flip over the burgers and cook for another 4 minutes for medium rare. Cook longer for well done.
Top the burgers with cheese on the last minute of cooking. Tent some aluminum foil over the top to melt the cheese.

Assemble:

Lightly toast the burger buns. Top with the burger and cheese. Top with crispy pancetta, sliced poached pears and a small handful of fresh arugula. Serve!
If you don’t want your cheese melted do not add it to the burger patties the last minute of cooking time. Just top the burgers with the cheese when assembling.

Note
Even though you will not be using the poaching liquid for this recipe, you can bring the poaching liquid to a boil and reduce it by half. Serve the syrup over fruit or ice-cream if desire.