Hamburguesa Con Queso!


1 teaspoon whole cumin seeds
2 tsp light olive oil
1/4 cup Serrano chili, minced
1/2 cup grated onion
2 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
1/2 cup Sutter Home Chenin Blanc
2 pounds ground chuck
3/4 cup packed fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon ground New Mexico chili powder
Salsa Fresca:
1 cup tomato, seeded and diced
1/2 cup white onion, diced
3/4 cup cilantro leaves, chopped
2 tablespoons Serrano chili, minced
1 clove of garlic, peeled and halved
2 ripe Haas avocados, peeled and chopped
4 tablespoons white onion, chopped fine
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
Grated zest of one lime
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
2-3 tablespoons vegetable oil
6- 6” flour tortillas
3 cups Monterey jack cheese, shredded
3 tablespoons sour cream
1 1/2 cup romaine lettuce, shredded



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

Place a 8″cast iron skillet on the grill until it is really hot. Toast the cumin seeds for 1-2 minutes, shaking the skillet to prevent them from burning and until they are fragrant. Turn them out onto a cutting board and crush them with the side of a chef’s knife.

Return the skillet to the grill and heat the olive oil. Sauté the serrano, onion and garlic for 2-3 minutes, until softened. Add the wine and simmered until it is reduce by half. Set onion mixture aside to cool.

To make the patties, combine the chuck, cilantro, salt, pepper, cumin, New Mexico chili powder and onion-wine reduction in a large bowl and mix gently. Shape into 6 half moon patties. Cover with plastic and set aside.

To prepare the salsa fresca, combine the tomato, onion, cilantro and Serrano chilies in a bowl. Cover and set aside.

To prepare the guacamole, rub the cut side of the garlic clove inside a small bowl and discard. Mash together the avocado, onion, lime juice, lime zest, salt and pepper in the seasoned bowl. Cover and set aside.

Grill the burgers: Place the patties on the rack, cover and cook turning once, until done to preferred temperature, 5 minutes on each side for medium-rare. Set the patties aside to rest and return the cast iron skillet to grill. Lay 6 flour tortillas on your work surface and put 1/4 cup shredded Monterey jack on one half of each. Place a patty over cheese on each of the tortillas and top each with remaining 1/4 cup of shredded cheese on each patty. Fold the tortillas over the cheese covered patties.

Brush the skillet with vegetable oil using a pastry brush and use a spatula to lay the quesadillas into the skillet- two at a time. Once the cheese melts and the tortilla is crisp on one side, flip them over to crisp the other side. Repeat with remaining quesadilla burgers.
Lift one side of each tortilla slightly and fill quesadilla with 1 tablespoon sour cream,1/4 cup lettuce, 2 tablespoons salsa fresca and 2 tablespoons guacamole. Replace “lid” and enjoy! Makes 6 burgers