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Michael Symon takes third Burger Bash win in a row

Michael Symon holds his Porky Burgers during the Burger Bash at the Food Network South Beach Wine & Food Festival in Miami Beach, Fka., on Friday, Feb. 24, 2012. Michael Symon holds his Porky Burgers during the Burger Bash at the Food Network South Beach Wine & Food Festival in Miami Beach, Fka., on Friday, Feb. 24, 2012. (AP photo/Jeffrey M. Boan)
By J.M. Hirsch
AP Food Editor / February 24, 2012
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MIAMI BEACH, Fla.—Food Network Iron Chef Michael Symon turned a triple dose of pork into a third consecutive top win at the South Beach Wine and Food Festival's annual Burger Bash.

"We like the meat-on-meat concept," Symon said Friday of his string of winning burgers, all of which were dressed with meaty toppings. This year's winner, the Porky Burger, featured a ground pork burger studded with bacon, then topped with pulled pork. And for good measure, he added a side of pork cracklings.

"The first year we did the salami. The second year we did the pastrami. This year we ground the bacon into the meat for the burger," he said. "We did what we thought was impossible, so maybe we should call it quits."

Last year Symon's winning burger was the Yo! Burger, a beef patty topped with fried salami, provolone cheese, shasha sauce and pickled onion. In 2010, it was his Fat Doug, which was topped with pastrami, Swiss cheese and coleslaw on a brioche bun.

The award is part of the annual Burger Bash, a fixture of the festival hosted by Rachael Ray. Dozens of chefs from around the country gather in a massive tent on the beach, cooking up their best burger creations for thousands of attendees.

Other previous winners include Spike Mendelsohn of Good Stuff Eatery in Washington (2009), Michael Schlow of Radius in Boston (2008) and Shake Shack of New York (2007).

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