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Chorizo and Garlic Burgers with Fiery Apricot and Red Pepper Salsa

My husband fell in love with Spain when he went on a trip before we got married. He introduced me to tapas dishes on a romantic weekend trip to New York. I love chorizo sausage, roasted red peppers and the lovely cheeses of Spain. Inspired by his love of Spain and my love of burgers, I created these Chorizo and Garlic Burgers with Fiery Apricot and Red Pepper Salsa.

Ingredients 

1 cup Sutter Home Cabernet Sauvignon
1 1/2 pounds ground chuck
1/2 pound uncooked pork chorizo sausage
21 cloves of garlic, minced
1 pinch saffron strands
1 tablespoon ground turmeric
2 teaspoons salt
3 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
Vegetable oil, for brushing the grill
6 fresh apricots, cut in halves with pits removed
3 red bell peppers
1 large sweet onion, such as Vidalia, diced
5 serrano chile peppers
Juice of one large lime
6 white-bread buns, split, fresh
12 ounces of goat cheese

Instructions 

Prepare a medium-hot fire in a charcoal grill with a cover, or preheat a gas grill to medium-high. To make the wine drizzle, take one cup of Cabernet Sauvignon and pour it into a small saucepan. Prepare a reduction by simmering wine until only a syrup remains. Watch the contents carefully to ensure the wine drizzle does not burn. Remove saucepan from heat. Set aside. To make the patties, combine the ground chuck and the chorizo sausage in a large bowl with hands until combined. Add garlic, saffron, turmeric, salt and pepper. Mix again with hands until the garlic and spices are mixed throughout the meat. Divide the mixture into 6 equal portions. With your hands, form rounded patties out of the burger meat. Set aside in a cool place. To make the salsa, make sure the grill heat is medium-high. When the grill is ready, brush the grill rack with vegetable oil. Heat the apricot halves and whole red bell peppers directly on the grill rack. Heat apricots and peppers until the skins are charred. Be sure to turn the peppers so all of the sides are charred. Once the skins are blackened, remove the apricots and peppers from the grill rack using tongs, place in a zippered plastic bag, and zip the top closed. Leave the bag zipped for 10 minutes to steam the apricots and peppers. After 10 minutes have passed, open the bag carefully to allow the steam to escape, remove the apricots and peppers with tongs, and place on a plate to cool. Once the apricots and peppers have cooled enough to touch, carefully peel the skins off with your fingers. Chop the apricots and pepper into small pieces. Set them aside. Pour the olive oil in a frying pan, and heat pan to medium heat. Add the onion and stir with a wooden spoon. Cook the onions until they are caramelized, soft and brown. Once the onions are ready, remove them from the heat. Place the apricots, red peppers, and onions into a medium bowl. Chop serrano chiles into small pieces, including seeds, and place them in the bowl with the apricots, red peppers and onions. Pour the lime juice into the bowl, stirring ingredients with a spoon until well-mixed. To grill the burgers, ensure that the grill heat is still medium-high, and brush the grill rack again with vegetable oil. Place patties on the rack, cover and cook, turning once, just until done, about 5 minutes on each side. To assemble the burgers, on each bun bottom, spoon on some of the apricot and red pepper salsa until bun is covered. Place a patty on top of the salsa. On each patty, pour on a little bit of the Cabernet Sauvignon drizzle. Spread 2 ounces of goat cheese on each patty. Add the bun tops and serve. Makes 6 burgers

Comments 

After some trial and error, I always use use fresh, soft buns! I tried using Manchego cheese but the flavor was too subtle. Goat cheese works much better because the flavor works with the robust burger flavor. Ole!