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Tropical Tidal Wave Dessert Burgers with Mascarpone Spread

These heavenly brugers are for dessert and guests always leave talking about them! The patties are made of tropical fruits and they are topped with a creamy mascarpone cheese spread. Fresh basil leaves add a bright flavor,while toasted coconut & macadamia nuts add a crunchy texture. Perhaps the crowning glory of this dessert is that the brugers are served up on toasted cinnamon rolls! Because the cinnamon rolls have no icing, this dessert is not too sweet. Just ask your bakery to save you some burger-sized cinnamon rolls without icing.


Mascarpone Spread:
1 cup mascarpone cheese
¼ cup light brown sugar
2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
1 teaspoon Garam Masala spice
Tropical Tidal Wave Burgers:
1 cup chopped, salted macadamia nuts
1 cup sweetened, shredded coconut
½ cup pineapple juice
1/3 cup couscous
1 ½ cups Sutter Home Zinfandel
1 cup dried sweetened blueberries
1 cup canned, crushed pineapple, squeezed dry
1 cup finely diced fresh or frozen mango
1 cup finely diced fresh or frozen peaches
¼ cup tahini
Colavita olive oil for brushing grill rack
6 large cinnamon rolls, without icing, split
6 Tablespoons chopped basil leaves


Prepare a medium-hot fire in a charcoal grill with a cover, or preheat a gas grill to medium-high. To make mascarpone spread, combine mascarpone cheese, brown sugar, lemon zest and Garam Masala in a small bowl. Mix well and refrigerate until serving. To make dessert burgers, toast nuts and coconut in a dry 12” skillet on the grill, stirring frequently for about 3-5 minutes, or until coconut is light brown. Pour onto a plate to cool slightly. Bring pineapple juice to a boil in a small saucepan on the grill. Remove from heat, stir in couscous, and cover. Let stand 5 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Pour onto plate to cool slightly. Meanwhile, warm the Zinfandel in a small covered sauce pan on the grill for 2-3 minutes. Remove from heat, add blueberries, cover and let stand 10 minutes. Drain the blueberries, reserving the “flavored” Zinfandel to pour into a wine glass to sip while grilling. Reserving ½ cup for topping; pour macadamia-coconut mixture into a large bowl. Add cooked couscous, drained blueberries, pineapple, mango, peaches and tahini. Mix well and divide the mixture into 6 equal portions. Form the portions into patties to fit the rolls. Brush the grill rack with oil. Place patties on the rack, cover and grill until lightly browned on the bottom, about 2-4 minutes. Turn the patties and grill for 2-4 minutes more. During the last few minutes of cooking, place cinnamon rolls, cut side down, on the outer edges of rack to toast lightly. To assemble the burgers, spread the cut side of each roll with a generous amount of mascarpone spread. Sprinkle the bottom rolls with 1 Tablespoon basil, top with a patty, and sprinkle with the reserved macadamia-coconut mixture. Add the roll tops and serve. Makes 6 dessert burgers.


I recommend placing a non-stick seafood rack on top of the grill to preheat, also. I use one with circular holes in it. It is easier to cook these burgers on that type of grill rack, if it allowed in the contest. I did not put it in the directions, because I did not want that to disqualify me.