Thursday, August 07, 2008

Oprah's Favorite Turkey Burgers

Before I talk about this recipe, let me make one thing clear. Although my primary role is an at-home mom, I do not sit at home and eat bon-bons and watch daytime TV all day long. In fact, my TV is rarely on during the day, because I've got lots to get done and I don't need the distraction. I think Oprah is a wonderful person, but I almost never watch her show.

A friend mentioned that Oprah had raved about a turkey burger on her show, saying the turkey burger at Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort was the best she had tasted. So when my husband had a hankering for burgers, I hunted for the recipe, and found it here.

When I read the recipe, here's the first thing that struck me: it called for four pounds of turkey breast for eight burgers! That's a half pound of turkey a burger! Are you freaking kidding me? I have a good appetite but a half pound of ground turkey -- in addition to all the other stuff in the burger -- would make me feel like I had swallowed a boulder. I scaled the recipe down to one pound of ground turkey, and also scaled down the serving size to make three generous patties from a pound of ground turkey. I was wary about buying the pricey ground turkey breast the recipe called for, because I thought it might make the burger dry, but I shelled out the $4.99 for the turkey breast. The original recipe called for Tabasco Chipotle pepper sauce, which I didn't have on hand. Instead, I used the original Tabasco and added a drop of liquid smoke to get the smokiness of the Chipotle sauce. The recipe called for the ground turkey mixture to be refrigerated for two hours, but I didn't have the time.

In the end, the patty was, in fact, one of the best ground turkey patties I've tasted. It was moister and more flavorful than other turkey burgers, and not in the weird way I had expected from the apples. I had one for dinner, and the other two are in the freezer for another meal. I didn't read to the end of the recipe, so I didn't see that the burger should be served with Mar-A-Lago pear chutney until after I had gone grocery shopping. I'll have to try it with the burgers next time.

Turkey Burgers
Adapted from the Turkey Burger at Mar-a-Lago
Makes 3 burgers

1 thinly sliced scallion
2 Tablespoons finely chopped celery
3/4 of a Granny Smith apple , peeled and diced
1 Tablespoon canola oil
1 pound ground turkey breast
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon Tabasco sauce plus one drop of liquid smoke (or Tabasco chipotle pepper sauce)
1/3 of a lemon, juiced, plus the grated zest
Several sprigs of parsley, finely chopped
2 Tablespoons Major Grey's Chutney, pureed (I pureed extra to use as a topping)

Sauté the scallions, celery and apples in the canola oil until tender. Let cool.

Place the ground turkey in a large mixing bowl. Add sautéed items and the remaining ingredients. Shape into three burgers. (Refrigerate for 2 hours, if you have time.)

Season the turkey burgers with salt and pepper. Place on a preheated, lightly oiled grill. Grill each side for 5-7 minutes until meat is thoroughly cooked. Let sit for 5 minutes.

(The original recipe says to serve it with a side of Mar-a-Lago Pear Chutney and your favorite toasted bread, pita or hamburger roll.)

6 comments:

Patsyk said...

hmmmm... I'm guessing you've had more than one person make the wrong assumption about how you spend your day, huh? I hate when people make uninformed assumptions!

The recipe sounds interesting... I think it was a good idea to scale it back though since a 1/2 pound of meat per person is pretty excessive!

Lisa said...

Nice turkey burger!Always looking for new healthier burger recipes.

Amy said...

It seems like stuffing to me, I use granny smith apples in my sausage stuffing. Unfortunately I can't try these out, my husband won't eat them once he hears about the apples, since he hates hot fruit. Hmm, maybe I could tell him they're potatoes? No, I forget he can actually taste and would probably figure out the difference.

Tracy said...

Patsy, I'm probably just overly defensive/sensitive about how I spend my days.

Lisa, I'll bet you'll like it.

Amy, I'm with your husband -- I would rather eat fruit uncooked. But you really don't get an apple-y taste from this recipe. You probably could chop them finer and say they were onions and celery. which are in the recipe anyway. Not that I'm advocating trickery ...

Jenny said...

Sounds good to me Tracy! I'm all over burgers, it's nice that this one is even pretty healthy!

Karin said...

My friend made these for us last night and she made the chutney as well. (Her patties were small, so I am assuming she made the same judgemet you did about the portion.)I usually have huge problems with "sweet" anywhere but dessert, so I was a little apprehensive. I msut say, they were excellent, and so was the sauce. I don't know that I would go through the trouble to roast a pear just for a sauce, but I'm sure glad she did!

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