Coconut Chicken Burgers with Spicy Plum Sauce and Warm Asian Slaw

Pairs well with:

White Zinfandel

With strawberry and melon essences, this American original is perfectly at home with however you like to unwind.

I can’t get enough of Asian food. I decided to re-create some of my favorite Asian flavors (coconut and plum sauce) in burger form.


2 pounds ground chicken
2 tablespoons soy sauce
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/3 cup minced scallions
1/3 cup minced celery
2/3 cup sweetened coconut flakes
2/3 cup panko bread crumbs
1 teaspoon kosher salt

Spicy Plum Sauce:
3/4 cup water
1/4 cup Sutter Home Red
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup honey
2 teaspoons ginger root, peeled and minced
2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoon Chinese five-spice powder
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
4 plums, cut in half and pitted
1 tablespoon cornstarch
3 tablespoons water
1/2 cup hoisin sauce

Warm Asian Slaw:
2 tablespoons sesame oil
1 red bell pepper, cut into matchsticks
1 medium carrot, peeled and cut into matchsticks
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon rice wine vinegar
1 1/2 cups thinly sliced green cabbage
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

Vegetable oil, for brushing on the grill rack
6 good quality hamburger buns, split


To make the patties, combine all the ingredients in a large bowl. Handling the meat as little as possible to avoid compacting it, mix well. Form the mixture into 6 equal patties to fit the buns, cover, and refrigerate until ready to grill.
Prepare a medium-hot fire in a charcoal grill with a cover, or preheat a gas grill to medium.

To make the sauce, combine water, wine, sugar, honey, ginger, lemon juice, five-spice, red pepper flakes and plums in medium saucepan. Place on grill rack or side burner (if available). Heat mixture to boiling, then turn to low and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool 5 minutes. Transfer mixture to blender and process until smooth. Pour mixture back into saucepan and return to grill. In small bowl, whisk together cornstarch and water. Add cornstarch mixture to the saucepan and cook until thickened, about 2 – 3 minutes. Pour into small bowl and stir in hoisin sauce. Cover the bowl and set aside.

To make the slaw, turn the grill back up to medium and heat the oil in a large nonstick fireproof skillet on the grill rack or side burner (if available). Add the bell pepper and carrot and sauté about 5 minutes, or until crisp tender. Add soy sauce and cook another 30 seconds. Remove from heat and add vinegar and cabbage and toss. Transfer mixture to medium bowl and sprinkle with salt. Cover until serving.

Heat the grill to medium-high. When the grill is ready, wipe the grill rack with oil. Place the patties on the rack, cover, and cook for about 5 minutes. Turn the patties and cook 4-5 minutes longer or until chicken is cooked through and juices run clear. During the last few minutes of cooking, place the buns, cut side down, on the rack to toast and warm.

To assemble the burgers, spread the plum sauce over the cut sides of the buns. Place a patty on each bun bottom. Top with a generous portion of slaw. Add the top bun. Serve and enjoy.