The social network that celebrates Latin food
By Liz Caskey, cookbook author, wine expert and author of Eat Wine
Summer is just around the corner in much of the U.S. (cold, rainy weather just a detail) and grilling seems to be synonymous with warm weather. This coming weekend, Memorial Day, officially inaugurates the picnic and barbeque season. Ahh, the smells of charcoal and seared meat fill the air. If you want a twist on your typical hamburger cook out, try these “lamb burgers” for some “south-of-the-equator” flair.
In the windblown pastures of the Chilean Patagonia, the ratio of sheep to humans is 10 to 1. Sheep have a relaxed life munching on the coirón grasses which infuse the meat with an herbal, almost floral taste. While lamb in Chile is traditionally spitted whole and slow cooked over flames for hours, in this recipe, we fuse the pleasantly gamey, sweet ground meat with the traditional North American hamburger.
Lamb is also the perfect pairing for a hearty Carmenere, the base of the exquisite wine blend we are pairing it with, Novas. Earthy spices, like cumin and ground cilantro, are kneaded into the patties. The earthy flavor tangos with the spiciness coming from the Carmenere as well as the other grape in the blend – Cabernet Sauvignon. The grill imparts a smoky, charred flavor to the meat and explodes the intense flavor of the lamb and wine combination.
Chileans are passionate about their sandwiches, adorning them with thick layers of mashed avocado, homemade mayonnaise and topping off with fresh tomato slices. With the Avocado-Mayo, we’ve fused two key ingredients. Heaven? My mouth thought so!
Watch on and feel free to share your grilling tips and wine pairings in the comments section.
To learn more about Liz’s culinary and wine tours in Chile, Argentina and Uruguay, visit Caskey Culinary & Wine Experiences at www.lizcaskey.com. And do check out Hispanic Kitchen's interview with Liz...