Looking to capture those consumers trading down from casual restaurants, Burger King Corp., Miami, is testing more than 45 new menu items that can be prepared by a new, more flexible broiler cooker. These new offerings could include barbecued ribs, a grilled salmon sandwich or a steak kabob, theMiami Heraldreported.

“The broiler takes the flame-broiled taste that consumers know us for and gives us the ability to be very revolutionary with the food offerings we can deliver,” said John Schaufelberger, Burger King’s senior vice president of product marketing and innovation. Company officials say the new broiler already is installed in about 60 percent of U.S. stores and should be available systemwide by January 2010.

In April, stores in regional markets will start promoting the first new offering designed for the new broiler: the XTC Steakhouse Burger, a thicker, juicier offering in one of three flavors.

Priced at $4.69, the new burger is at the high end of Burger King’s price scale - while comparatively priced with casual restaurant offerings. The most elaborate new burger combines Swiss, cheddar and American cheese with bacon, Parmesan peppercorn sauce and more, the newspaper reported. Other tests (Las Vegas, Indianapolis) will involve fire-grilled pork ribs.