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Ancho Rubbed Sirloin Burgers with Smoky Avocado Cream

Brown sugar adds just a hint of sweetness to these spicy burgers. The chipotles in the avocado cream blend well with the spices on the burgers to give a slight burst of heat in every bite. Thick, juicy tomatoes provide some cooling relief.


Ancho Rub:
2 tablespoons ancho chili powder
1 tablespoon coriander seeds, crushed
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
2 tablespoons brown sugar
Smoky Avocado Cream:
1 chipotle chili in 1 teaspoon of adobo sauce
1 tablespoon finely chopped shallot
1/4 cup cilantro
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 Avocado, peeled, seed removed
1 lime, divided
1/2 cup Colavita Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 1/4 pounds freshly ground beef sirloin
2 teaspoons kosher salt
Oil to brush the grill rack
6 Ciabatta rolls, split
6 (1/2 inch thick) tomato slices


In a small bowl combine the ancho chili powder, crushed coriander, black pepper, salt, cinnamon, smoked paprika and brown sugar. Spread the mixture onto a large sheet of waxed paper. Preheat a gas grill to medium-high heat. To make the Smoky Avocado Cream, combine in a food processor the chipotle chili, shallot, cilantro, kosher salt and avocado. Add 1 teaspoon of zest from the lime and the juice of 1/2 the lime. Process until combined. With the motor on the food processor running, slowly add the Colavita Extra Virgin Olive Oil and process until mixture is emulsified. Cover while preparing the patties. Crumble the ground beef sirloin into a large bowl and season with the salt. Gently form the meat into 6 equal sized patties. Gently press both sides of each patty into the ancho rub on the waxed paper, evenly dividing the mixture between the patties; set aside. Lightly brush the grill rack with oil. Place the patties on the grill, close the cover and cook for 4 minutes. Flip the patties and cook for an additional 4-5 minutes for medium, or until desired doneness. Place the Ciabatta rolls split side down on the grill during the last 2 minutes of grilling to lightly toast. To assemble the burgers, arrange 1 cooked patty on the bottom half of each roll. Top each with a tomato slice and spoon a generous portion of the Smoky Avocado Cream onto each. Top with remaining roll halves and serve.