Summertime Baja Burgers with Sweet Corn-Avocado Crema and Stonefruit Salsa

Pairs well with:

Chenin Blanc

This wine is bursting with crisp, refreshing fruit flavors like apple, pear, and melon, making you want to swing your legs off a dock at sunset.


1 (15-ounce) can black beans, drained
2 lbs. ground chuck
1/4 cup finely chopped sun-dried tomatoes
1/4 cup canned adobo sauce
3 tablespoons finely chopped chipotle chiles in adobo sauce
2 teaspoons cumin
2 teaspoons smoked paprika
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 to 3 tablespoons vegetable oil, for brushing on the grill rack

Sweet Corn-Avocado Crema
2 large cobs of sweet corn
1 Hass avocado, peeled, pitted
1/2 cup sour cream
1 tablespoon lime juice
1 teaspoon agave nectar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Stonefruit Salsa
1 medium plum, pitted, halved
1 medium nectarine, pitted, halved
3/4 cup fresh cherries, stemmed
1/2 cup finely chopped red onion
3 tablespoons minced pickled jalapeno peppers
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped cilantro
1 tablespoon lime juice
1 teaspoon finely grated lime zest
1 teaspoon agave nectar
3/4 teaspoon minced garlic
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

12 thin slices Cantimpalo chorizo sausage
6 ounces thinly sliced queso fresco cheese
6 cornmeal-dusted kaiser rolls, split
6 leaves bibb lettuce


Preheat a gas grill to medium-high.

To make the patties, in a large bowl, add black beans and finely mash; add chuck, sun-dried tomatoes, adobo sauce, chipotle, cumin, paprika, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt and 3/4 teaspoon pepper. Combine well, handling the meat as little as possible; form into 6 patties, cover, and refrigerate until ready to grill.

When the grill is ready, brush grill rack with vegetable oil.
To make the Sweet Corn-Avocado Crema, place corn cobs on the rack and cook for 4-5 minutes, turning occasionally, until grill marks are achieved, and corn is softened. Slice kernels off of corn cob and place in a food processor; pulse until finely chopped. Add avocado, sour cream, lime juice, 1 teaspoon agave nectar, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper, and pulse until well combined and creamy; place in a medium-sized bowl, cover, and refrigerate until ready for use.

To make the Stonefruit Salsa, place plum, nectarine and cherries on rack; grill 5-6 minutes, flipping once, or until softened and grill marks are achieved. Remove from grill, pit the cherries, coarsely chop fruit and place in a medium bowl; stir in red onion, jalapeno, cilantro, lime juice, lime zest, 1 teaspoon agave nectar, garlic, 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper, until well combined. Cover and refrigerate until ready for use.

Place half of the chorizo in a large, heavy nonstick fire-proof skillet on the grill, and cook for 2 minutes per side, until crispy; transfer to paper towels to drain. Repeat process with remaining chorizo; wrap in foil and keep warm.

Place the patties on the rack, cover, and cook, turning once, until done to preference, 5 to 6 minutes on each side for medium. Evenly place the queso fresco on the patties during the last 3 minutes of grilling. Place the rolls, cut side down, on the outer edges of the rack to toast lightly during the last 2 minutes of grilling.

To assemble the burgers, evenly divide and spread the sweet corn-avocado crema over the cut sides of warm rolls. Evenly divide the lettuce leaves onto each roll bottom, followed by 2 slices of chorizo, a cheese-topped patty, and an equal portion of stonefruit salsa. Add the roll tops and serve.

Makes 6 burgers