“Lettuce Wrapped” Burgers with Spicy Bechamel Sauce

Pairs well with:

Pinot Grigio

You won’t need a bouquet of flowers when you share our Pinot Grigio. This crisp wine with floral aromas is a wonderful way to make an entrance.


2 pounds ground chuck
3/4 cup of finely chopped water chestnuts
4 green onions, diced
1 teaspoon of freshly ground ginger
1 teaspoon of dried, ground ginger
1 teaspoon of salt
1/2 teaspoon of ground black pepper
1 stick of unsalted butter
1 cup and 2 tablespoons of all-purpose flour
1 quart of whole milk
1 teaspoon of Asian hot chili sauce
6 Kasier Rolls
1 head lettuce
6 large wooden toothpicks



Preheat grill to 350 degrees.

Put the ground chuck in a large mixing bowl. Add water chestnuts, green onions, fresh ginger, dried ginger, salt, and pepper. Combine ingredients with your hands so that everything is incorporated. (Do not handle the mixture too much or it will make your burgers rubbery!) Set the mixture aside so the flavors marry.

Place a medium saucepan directly onto your grill. Allow pan to preheat for about 1 minute. Melt the stick of butter in the pan which takes about 1 to 1½ minutes. Slowly whisk the flour into the melted butter until smooth. Always stirring, gradually add the milk and continue to whisk until the sauce is smooth and creamy. Whisk in the Asian hot chili sauce. Transfer the sauce pan to a cooler part of the grill so it is not directly over the heat while the sauce simmers. Simmer until it is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon then remove from heat. This will take approximately 10 minutes.

While the béchamel simmers, form the burger mixture into 6 equally sized patties.
Brush the grill rack with vegetable oil. Place the patties on the grill rack, cover, and cook. Turn the patties once, until done to preference, 5 to 7 minutes on each side for medium and 7-8 minutes for medium-well. Remove from heat and set aside on a foil wrapped dish.

Cut the Kaiser rolls in half and place on the upper rack of the grill, cover and toast. This will take about 2 minutes then remove from heat.

Separate the head lettuce into large pieces then slice each piece in half vertically so that you have strips of lettuce that are about 3-4 inches wide and about 8-9 inches long.

To assemble to burger: Take bottom half of roll and place one end of a lettuce strip onto the roll; half of the lettuce will not fit onto the roll. Place one patty on top of the lettuce and roll then wrap the remaining strip of lettuce on top of the patty. Spoon 1 ½ tablespoon of the spicy béchamel sauce onto the top half of the roll and spread evenly. Place the top of the roll on top of the lettuce wrapped patty. Secure each burger with a large wooden toothpick. Use kitchen scissors to trim any excess lettuce that does not fit onto roll.

Serve the “Lettuce Wrapped” Burgers and enjoy!