Don Quixote Burger with Fried Chorizo & Romesco Salad

Pairs well with:


Bright and full-bodied, this Zinfandel wine is a curious contradiction in tastes.

Spanish food is one of my new favorites.Having never particularly had it through most of my life, now that I’ve tried it, I am entranced. I incorporate some really authentic (and sublime) Spanish ingredients into my burger, such as Spanish chorizo and Spanish blue cheese as well as incorporating a great Spanish condiment: Romesco. If you’re never tried the food of Spain, then try this burger because I promise you it’s a real treat!!


Spanish Blue Mayo:
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup crumbed Valdeon or Cabrales blue cheese
1 small clove garlic, crushed and finely minced

Fried Chorizo:
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
4 ounces Spanish chorizo, very thinly sliced on the diagonal and julienned

Romesco Salad:
1 1/2 cups baby arugula, tightly packed, chopped
1 cup diced jarred roasted red pepper, drained (preferably piquillo peppers)
1/2 cup diced tomato (seeded)
1/3 cup chopped hazelnuts (or almonds), toasted
3 tablespoons minced shallot
1 clove garlic, crushed and finely minced
Pinch dried red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon sherry vinegar (or white wine vinegar)

2 pounds ground chuck
2 tablespoons finely minced Spanish olives (pitted)
2 tablespoons capers, drained and rinsed, finely minced
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/4 cup finely minced fresh Italian parsley leaves
1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Vegetable oil, for brushing on the grill rack
8 ounces Iberico cheese, shredded (can substitute Manchego)
6 good-quality potato hamburger buns, split


Preheat a gas grill to medium-high heat.

To make Spanish Blue Mayo, in a small mixing bowl combine mayonnaise, blue cheese, and garlic.

To make Fried Chorizo, heat oil in a large fireproof non-stick skillet on the grill. Add chorizo and cook over medium-high heat, about 4-5 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until browned and crispy. Drain on paper towels.

To make Romesco Salad, in a large mixing bowl combine arugula, red pepper, tomato, nuts, shallot, garlic, and red pepper flakes. In another small mixing bowl, whisk together oil and vinegar. Just before serving, pour vinaigrette over salad; toss until well combined.

To make the patties, in a large mixing bowl combine beef, olives, capers, garlic, smoked paprika, parsley, thyme, salt, and pepper. Handling the meat as little as possible to avoid compacting it, mix well. Divide the mixture into 6 equal portions and form the portions into patties to fit the bread.

Brush the grill rack with vegetable oil. Place the patties on the rack, cover, and cook, turning once, just until done, about 4 to 5 minutes on each side for medium-rare. During the last few minutes of cooking, top each burger with equal amounts of cheese and place the buns, cut side down, on the outer edges of the rack to toast lightly.

To assemble the burgers, spread a moderate layer of Spanish Blue Mayo on the cut side of the buns. On each bun bottom, place equal amounts of Fried Chorizo, a patty topped with cheese, and a generous amount of Romesco Salad. Add bun tops and serve.

Makes 6 burgers.