Friday, 8 February 2013

Chargrilled Burgers with Red Wine Barbecue Sauce

The other day I sent my 9 year old son to his new school in the wrong school uniform. He was dressed in his sports uniform and I told him to change into his regular uniform, with a nanosecond to go before the school bus arrived. He was rushed and slightly stressed, telling me the whole time that he was sure he was meant to be dressed in his sports uniform because they had P.E. that day. Turns out he was right and I'm a bad mother. Luckily he packed his sports uniform in his bag "just in case" he was right and I was wrong. What were the odds? Given that he is at school every day, paying attention to the teacher and being responsible enough to know what uniform he is meant to be wearing and I'm too busy and hysterical to read the letter that he brought home which clearly stated that he was permitted to wear his sports uniform on that particular day... Like I said, bad mother.

And later that evening...

I went to pick up my 12 year old son from cricket which was meant to finished at 7pm but didn't actually finish until 7.45. So for 45 minutes I had unwittingly been sitting in my car with the accessories still turned on while my battery was silently going flat. When the game finally finished and we could get out of there, we couldn't get out of there. If I wasn't already annoyed at having to sit in the heat, in my car for 45 extra minutes, now my two beautiful, patient boys and I had to sit for another hour before roadside assistance came and assisted us.

My children have forgiven me, but I made them these burgers to aid the process.

Chargrilled Burgers with Red Wine Barbecue Sauce
adapted from Food Network
Serves 4

For the Burgers:
600g ground chuck
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Red Wine Barbecue Sauce
8 slices good-quality cheese (I used an Austrian (that's Austrian, not Australian :) cheese called Ambrosia)
4 hamburger buns, split 
4 large portobello mushrooms
1 large red onion, thickly sliced
olive oil
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the Red Wine Barbecue Sauce:
3/4 cups ketchup
1 tablespoons ancho chilli powder
1 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoons molasses
1 tablespoons dark brown sugar
1/2 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1/2 tablespoon paprika
1/2 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1/2 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
Pinch cayenne pepper
1 canned chipotle chilli in adobo, chopped
1 cup dry red wine
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Make the Burgers:
Prepare a charcoal grill for direct and indirect heat. Brush the mushrooms and onions with oil on both sides and season with salt and pepper. Grill over direct heat on both sides until slightly charred and just cooked through, 4 to 5 minutes per side. Reserve for the burgers.

Divide the meat into 4 equal portions. Form each portion loosely into a 2cm-thick burger and make a deep depression in the center with your thumb. Brush with oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Put the burgers on the grill over direct heat and cook until nicely charred, about 3 minutes. Flip and cook until the second side is charred, about 3 minutes. Brush each burger with 1 tablespoon Red Wine Barbecue Sauce and top each with 2 slices of cheese. Cover the grill to melt the cheese and finish cooking, about 5 minutes.

Put the burgers on the bottom buns and top each with more barbecue sauce, some mushroom caps, some grilled onions and the top bun. Serve immediately with extra Red Wine Barbecue Sauce.

Make the Red Wine Barbecue Sauce:
Combine the ketchup, 1/2 cup water, ancho chilli powder, honey, molasses, sugar, mustard, paprika, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, cayenne pepper, and chipotle chilli in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a simmer and cook until thickened, about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Meanwhile, bring the wine to a simmer in a small saucepan over medium heat. Simmer until reduced to 1/2 cup, about 10 minutes. Stir the reduced wine into the sauce. Season with salt and pepper. Pour into a bowl and allow to cool at room temperature. 


  1. I'm not a mama yet, but I am a fifth-grade teacher, so I can totally relate to your story. Seems like these burgers would cover pretty much any offense though. :) From the mushrooms to the red wine bbq sauce (which I am dying to make immediately even though I'm already in bed with a 30 Rock re-run going...), these sound incredible. Those hamburger buns are gorgeous, too!

  2. These look absolutely amazing. I'm drooling looking at the screen. Definitely making these. Love your work x

  3. Thanks Little Kitchie. Children are so forgiving. I had a really bad day, but they were like "It's okay Mum, it'll get better." - at least I didn't mess the burgers up.

  4. Thanks so much Alice. I really appreciate your comment.

  5. What a story! These burgers could solve any problem hun? I should make them soon :)

  6. Thanks Gabrielle. A burger to cure all ills.

  7. Yum, thanks for linking this in to Food on Friday. Cheers

  8. Jennifer, thanks for bringing this to the BBQ. Cheers