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Treat hungry diners to upscale chicken burgers topped with cream cheese

Give ho-hum burgers a pass this summer and grill an upscale chicken version topped with cream cheese, olives and tomato pesto served on ciabatta or focaccia loaves.

Creamy Chicken Burger

650 g (1 1/3 lb) ground chicken

50 ml (1/4 cup) sun-dried tomato pesto

1 egg

125 ml (1/2 cup) breadcrumbs

Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

4 to 6 small olive ciabatta or olive focaccia loaves

Garnish

75 ml (1/3 cup) cream cheese, softened

30 ml (2 tbsp) sliced green olives

4 to 6 lettuce leaves, washed and patted dry

Heat barbecue to medium-high or oven to 220 C (425 F).

Place all ingredients except garnish and toppings

In a mixing bowl, place chicken, pesto, egg and breadcrumbs. Season with salt and pepper and combine. Divide mixture into 4 to 6 portions and shape into patties.

Place patties on grill or on parchment-lined baking sheet on centre rack of oven. Cook burgers for 12 to 14 minutes, turning only once.

In a small bowl, blend cream cheese and olives. Heat buns and top with cream cheese mixture. Add patties and lettuce and serve.

Makes 4 to 6 servings.

Tip: You can also cook the burgers in a skillet over medium-high heat, 5 to 7 minutes per side.

Source: Dairy Farmers of Canada.

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