Smoky Chipotle Mongolian Beef and Bacon Burgers with Cool Cucumber Relish and Firey Chili Mayo

Pairs well with:


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


Cool Cucumber Relish:
1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 ounces seasoned rice vinegar
2 medium size garlic cloves, finely minced
1/2 large English cucumber, thinly sliced
1/4 cup grated carrot
1/2 large red bell pepper, thinly sliced into rings then cut in half across
1/2 small purple onion, thinly sliced into rings then cut in half across
1 tablespoon coarsely chopped cilantro

Firey Chili Mayo:
5 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 tablespoon Sriracha chili sauce
1/4 teaspoon freshly squeezed lime juice

Mongolian Beef Burgers:
2 pounds 80/20 ground beef
6 slices precooked bacon, coarsely chopped
2 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
3 tablespoons adobo sauce
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 large shallot, finely minced
1 teaspoon oil
1 – 1/2 teaspoons finely chopped gingerroot
1 large garlic clove, finely minced
1/4 cup soy sauce
3 tablespoons light brown sugar

To Serve and Garnish:
2 tablespoons butter, softened
6 fresh bakery style sesame hamburger buns
2 medium size avocados, peeled, seeded and mashed, with 1 of the seeds added back in with the mashed avocados to keep them from turning brown
6 crisp inner leaves of Boston lettuce with the spines removed (if these are not big enough to completely cover the patties, use 2 for each burger)


Preheat an outdoor grill to medium high.

For the cucumber relish, combine the sugar, salt rice vinegar and garlic in a small bowl; whisk, cover and set aside.

Place the cucumber, carrot, red bell pepper, purple onion and cilantro in a separate medium size bowl. Whisk the dressing and pour over the cucumber mixture. Toss to coat, cover and keep cool until ready to serve.

For the Thai Hot Chili Mayonnaise, place the mayonnaise, chili sauce and lime juice in a small bowl, stir well, cover and keep cool until ready to use.

For the Mongolian Beef Burgers, place the ground beef, bacon, salt, black pepper, adobo sauce, red pepper flakes and shallots in a large bowl. Mix well to incorporate being careful not to overwork the meat. Shape into 6 patties that are the approximately the same size as the buns. Place on the hot grill and cook until desired doneness is reached, approximately 5-6 minutes on each side for medium. For the last 3 minutes of cooking time, move the patties to the outside of the grill while you cook the sauce.

Place a small sauce pan over the hottest part of the fire, pour in the oil, gingerroot and garlic. Saute for approximately 1 minute before adding the soy sauce and brown sugar; stir until the sugar is dissolved. Stir sauce often and slide the pot to the outside if it begins to cook too quickly; simmer until ready to serve. Transfer the cooked patties to a serving platter and cover with foil to keep warm.

Spread a small amount of butter onto the cut sides of the bun. If needed, quickly scrape off the outside of the grill to clean. Place buns on the grill, buttered side down and toast until golden brown, approximately 2-3 minutes.

Remove the buns from the grill and place on a platter, buttered sides up. On the top halves of the bun, spread approximately 2-3 teaspoons of the Chili Mayonnaise on each. On the bottom half of the buns top with equal amounts of the mashed avocado then top with one of the leaves of lettuce. Dip the patties, one at a time into the soy sauce mixture and place each one on top of the lettuce on the bottom half of the bun. Toss the cucumber mixture once more before topping the patties with equal amounts of it. Close the hamburger with the top half of the bun. Cut in half if desired and serve immediately.

Serves 6