Bluesiana Burgers with Zydeco Sauce, Mardi Gras Slaw, and Root Beer Glaze

Accolades 2008 Finalists
Serves Makes 6 burgers
Pairs well with:

Cabernet Sauvignon

This rich red easily complements your homemade chicken dishes, red meats, game, and mildly seasoned pastas.


Zydeco Sauce

  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons prepared horseradish
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon whole grain mustard
  • 1 tablespoon TABASCO pepper sauce
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes

Mardi Gras Slaw

  • 3 cups thinly shredded Napa cabbage
  • 1/2 cup thinly shredded purple cabbage
  • 1/2 cup very thinly sliced red onion
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced fennel
  • 1/2 cup very thinly sliced yellow bell pepper
  • 1/4 cup sugar cane vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon whole grain mustard
  • 1/2 cup Colavita Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1 cup finely crumbled mild blue cheese
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper

Root Beer Glaze

  • 1 1/2 cups root beer soda
  • 1 cup bottled chili sauce
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon dark molasses
  • 1 teaspoon liquid smoke
  • 1 teaspoon root beer extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


  • 2 pounds freshly ground chuck
  • 1 tablespoon TABASCO pepper sauce
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped green onion
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
  • Vegetable oil, for brushing on the grill rack
  • 6 good-quality hamburger buns, split
  • 1/2 cup melted butter



Prepare a medium-hot fire in a charcoal grill with a cover, or preheat a gas grill to medium-high.

To make the sauce, combine the mayonnaise, horseradish, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, pepper sauce and red pepper flakes in a bowl, mixing well; cover and refrigerate.

To make the slaw, combine the cabbages, onion, fennel, and bell pepper in a bowl and chill. Prepare the slaw dressing by combining the vinegar and mustard, and then slowly whisk in the olive oil. Refrigerate. About 15 minutes before serving, pour the dressing over the slaw mixture and toss. Add the crumbled blue cheese and toss again, evenly combining the cheese. Add the salt and pepper. Drain off excess liquid and chill the slaw until assembling the burgers.

To make the glaze, combine the root beer soda, chili sauce, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, sugar, molasses, liquid smoke, root beer extract, ginger, garlic powder, and onion powder in a heavy, medium fire-proof saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer until reduced to about 1 cup and thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, about 20 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper and set aside (it will thicken slightly as it cools).

To make the patties, place the ground chuck in a large bowl and refrigerate for 1 hour prior to using. Add the pepper sauce, green onions, salt, and pepper. Handling the meat as little as possible to avoid compacting it, mix well. Quickly shape the beef mixture into 6 round, equally-sized patties. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside until ready to grill.

Brush the grill rack with oil. Place the patties on the grill, cover, and cook, turning once, until done to preference, 5 to 7 minutes on each side for medium. Just before the patties are done, brush with the glaze.

Meanwhile, brush the melted butter on the top and bottom buns. Position the buns, cut side down, on the outer edges of the grill for the last 2 minutes of grilling to toast lightly.

When the patties are cooked, remove from the grill and keep warm while resting.

To assemble the burgers, spread a generous amount of the sauce over the cut sides of the buns. On each bun bottom, add a patty and brush again with the glaze. Add a portion of the slaw. Add the bun tops and serve.