from Chef Craig Deihl of Cypress in Charleston, South Carolina
2 pounds ground beef
Salt and pepper
4 buns, preferably homemade
½ cup pimento cheese
4 tablespoons bacon jam*
1 large tomato, cut into 4 equal-size slices
Butter lettuce leaves, washed with stems removed
2 pounds bacon, diced
1 pound brown sugar
1 cup sherry vinegar
1 ½ tablespoons thyme
1 ½ tablespoons fresh sage
½ tablespoon chili flakes
Form ground beef into 4 equal-size patties. Season with salt and pepper. Place burgers on a high temperature grill and cook for 3-4 minutes on each side. These will be medium.
Remove from grill and rest for 1-2 minutes.
To plate, top each burger with 2 tablespoons pimento cheese. On each bottom bun, spread 1 tablespoon of bacon jam. Place burger on top of bottom bun. Top burger with sliced tomato, butter lettuce, and finish with top of bun.
Render bacon, but do not crisp.
Add remaining ingredients to pan and reduce by 1/3. Slightly cool to room temperature then purée until smooth in a blender, adding water if needed.