Down Home Tapas Sliders

Pairs well with:

Cabernet Sauvignon

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

This recipe was inspired by the pimento cheeseburgers at a burger shop in Charlotte.They are the best I have ever eaten (next to this on, of course). I had some leftover tapas ingredients in my freezer so I just used them to give the burgers a little Spanish flare.


Spanish Pimento Cheese
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup sour cream
1/4 cup mascarpone cheese, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups grated manchego cheese
1 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese
1/4 cup chopped roasted red pepper
1/2 teaspoon Worchester sauce
1/4 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/8 teaspoon garlic powder
1/8 teaspoon Kosher salt

Romesco Barbecue Sauce
2 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 slice white bread, crust removed and cubed
2 garlic cloves, peeled and chopped
1/4 cup Marcona almonds (use 1/4 cup sliced almonds if Marcona unavailable)
1/2 cup chopped roasted red peppers
1cup ketchup
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/3 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons fresh orange juice
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon coarse ground pepper
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro

1/2 pound Spanish chorizo, sliced
2 pounds ground chuck (80/20)
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1 teaspoon coarse ground pepper
1/4 cup Romesco Barbecue Sauce
1/3 cup water

12 potato dinner rolls
12 small Bibb lettuce leaves
12 slices Roma tomato


To make the pimento cheese, beat the mayonnaise, sour cream and mascarpone in a medium bowl with a rubber spatula until combined. Add the remaining ingredients and mix until combined. Transfer the cheese to a small bowl, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to use.
To make the barbecue sauce, heat the olive oil in a fire-proof skillet over medium heat gas grill. Add the bread, garlic and almonds. Cook until golden brown, about 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the next 12barbecue sauce ingredients and stir to combine. Cook, over medium-low heat, slightly covered, until thickened and reduced, about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in the cilantro and pour into a food processor, processing until smooth. Transfer the sauce to a bowl and cover until ready to use.
To make the patties, place the chorizo in a food processor and process until ground into small pieces, about 30 to 45 seconds. Combine the ground beef, chorizo, salt, pepper, barbecue sauce and water in a large bowl. Divide the meat into 12 portions and shape into patties, handling the meat as little as possible so it won’t become dense and tough. Press an indentation with your thumb in the middle of each patty.

Heat a gas grill to medium-high heat. Rub the grill with an oiled towel to prevent sticking. Place the patties on the grill and cook to preferred doneness, 3 to 5 minutes on each side for medium rare (5 to 7 minutes for medium). Spread 1 tablespoon pimento cheese on each burger, cover to melt the cheese. Toast the buns, cut side down, on the outer edge of the grill for a few seconds to lightly toast. Place the burgers on a serving plate. Remove the buns from the grill.

To assemble the burgers, place a lettuce leaf and tomato on the bun bottoms. Season tomato with salt and pepper and top with a patty. Spread barbecue sauce on the cut side of the bun tops and place on the patty, cut side down. Serve immediately.