Friday, May 25, 2012

Turkey Shish Kaburgers! A Seriously Not Horrible Turkey Burger

Usually when I post a recipe, I want it to be fantastic, awesome, incredible, inspiring, and/or mind-blowing. With this turkey shish kaburger, I was only shooting for not horrible. Happily, we achieved that and much more.

I’ve received countless food wishes for turkey burgers over the years, but just the mere thought of that dull, pale, insipid lump of meat (aka “the Mitt Romney of meat”), had me reaching for the delete button. Even when I’m out for a cheeseburger, and I see someone in front of me begrudgingly order the turkey burger (hold the mayo), I think to myself, “that poor bastard.”

So, how do you turn the dreaded t-burg into something that would cause envy instead of pity? When in doubt, go ethnic! I figured if we borrowed from the famously flavorful shish kabob, but used turkey instead of lamb or beef, we just may be able to pull this off. I know I lot of you think chunks of meat when you hear “shish kabob,” but ground meat is also used, and I’ve always preferred that version anyway.

As I mention in the clip, I used the “rising juice method” to test for doneness, but since ground poultry isn’t something you want to take a chance with, I suggest you use a thermometer to ensure an internal temperature of 165 degrees F. Just keep in mind, since turkey is so low in fat, no matter how incredibly well you season the meat, if you overcook these, even a little, they will be dry.

But, the good news is if you don’t, and remove them with most of their precious moisture intact, you’ll be enjoying a turkey burger that’s not only not horrible, but is actually delicious. Enjoy!

Ingredients for 4 turkey burgers:
1 1/2 lb ground turkey
1 1/2  tablespoons plain breadcrumbs
1 1/2  tablespoons ground almonds
1 or 2 tsp hot chili paste, or minced fresh hot peppers
2 cloves crushed garlic
1 1/2 teaspoon finely grated fresh ginger
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 1/2 teaspoons garam masala
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons yogurt
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
*I garnished mine with mayo, topped with red onions and tomatoes I tossed in lemon juice, and more cilantro leaves.

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