Hole Mole Mint Burgers

Pairs well with:


Hard to pronounce yet easy to drink, this wine combines lychee fruit and white peach flavors with a hint of spice.

My Hole Mole Mint Burger is a great local American burger! Like its cousin, the chiliburger, it has the distinctive influence of Mexican cooking while retaining the iconic stamp of the classic American Hamburger. Hole Mole Mint Burgers are a melding of styles and flavors that could only result from the cross cultural pollination from our closet neighbor to the South.

From Southern California, where I grew up, to the great Northwest, where I now live, local is where the crossroads meet.


2 tablespoons chopped toasted almonds
2 tablespoons roasted pumpkin seeds
1 tablespoon sesame seeds
1/2 cup chopped onions
1 14 oz.can diced tomatoes drained
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 cloves garlic

5 tablespoons cocoa powder
5 tablespoons powdered sugar
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

2 pounds ground beef
2 teaspoons kosher salt
2 teaspoons onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
Vegetable Oil for brushing on the grill rack
6 (4 1/2 inch) soft Kaiser Rolls
1 1/2 cups sour cream
2 cups fresh mint leaves
3 limes halved
1 1/2 cup grated queso blanco Mexican cheese


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

To make the mole, combine the almonds, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, onions, tomatoes, olive oil and garlic in a food processor. Puree and add to a medium sauce pan.

Combine and mix together cocoa powder, powdered sugar, chili powder, cinnamon, cumin, oregano, cloves and salt in a bowl. Add bowl ingredients and vegetable broth to the sauce pan and stir together. Place pan on the medium-hot area of the grill. Bring mole to a boil then move to the outer edge of the grill, stir and let simmer.

To make the patties, combine the beef, salt, pepper, onion powder and garlic powder in a large bowl, handling the meat as little as possible. Divide the mixture into 6 equal portions and form the portions into patties to fit the rolls.

Brush the grill rack with oil. Place the patties on the rack, cover and cook, turning once, until done to preference, 5-7 minutes on each side for medium. Place the rolls, cut side down, on the outer edges of the grill rack to toast lightly.

To assemble the burgers, spread equal amounts of sour cream over the cut side of the bottom rolls, followed by equal amounts of mint, shredded lettuce. Squeeze the juice of ½ lime over the lettuce. Add the burger patty, top with equally divided amounts of mole and grated cheese. Add the roll tops and serve.

Makes 6 burgers.