Is that even a term in cooking? I learned that term from sewing blogs, specifically a “pattern hack”. Sewists “hack a pattern” by combining different elements from existing patterns to create their own. Sometimes it’s to change the style, sometimes the fit. Well, today I did a recipe hack!
I Built a Better (Turkey) Burger
So remember our hockey pucks of a week ago? These were our good-looking, but oh-so-dry turkey burgers:
Well, I was determined to tinker with this recipe to find a way to add some moisture. I checked out all of my favorite food network gurus to see how they did it. So with a bit of help from Anne Burrell and Bobby Flay and a smattering of info from other recipes online I decided to make a few changes:
1. I used less lean ground turkey. Unbeknownst to me the original recipe used 85 % lean ground turkey, although that wasn’t specified in the written directions. I discovered that today when I was perusing the comments section on the blog where I found the recipe. So I chose 93% lean because that was all my supermarket had. This was a mix of dark and white meat ground turkey.
2. I added one egg white. Plenty of recipes use eggs. I didn’t want to overdo it because I was still trying to get a burger-like consistency rather than a meatloaf one. I saw one recipe that used egg whites so I adjusted the amount for my recipe.
3. I added 1/8 cup of (gluten-free) panko bread crumbs. Bobby Flay didn’t use any bread crumbs but lots of other recipes did. I went with a small amount.
4. I pumped up the jalapeño. We liked the flavor of the original recipe but thought it needed more kick. I still eliminated the seeds and most of the inner membrane.
5. I made a sambal oelek mayo spread for a condiment, both for added flavor and in case the burgers were still too dry. I think I stole this idea from Anne Burrell.
6. I gently combined the ingredients using a fork . I read that overworking the patties can make them tough.
PHEW! That was a lot of research for a weeknight dinner, but I am nothing if not persistent. And the results were FANTASTIC:
They still have that good eye-appeal, but oh my, they were divine.
Here’s a shot of David’s constructed burger with some avocado and the sambal mayo:
Unfortunately, by the time we realized that the photo was a bit blurry that burger was long gone 🙂
Some of what’s exciting about a recipe hack (aside from the fact that we had a great meal and a dish that’s a real keeper) is that I actually created my own recipe. And, I get to share it with my readers! So if you want to have some very delicious, very moist turkey burgers try the recipe at the end of this post
And if you’re still hungry I can recommend some gorgeous little pecan sandies that I also made this afternoon:
No recipe hack here but they’re just too delicious not to share. The exceptional flavor comes from toasted pecans ground right into the flour (I used gluten-free). Yum. This recipe is from my go-to, Smitten Kitchen and you can find it here.
So there was lots of good eating in our house tonight. And now I’m off to go root against San Antonio (long-suffering Suns fan here) 🙂
Third Act Evolution Everyday Turkey Burgers (Makes 5 one-inch thick burgers)
1 pound ground turkey (I used Jennie-O 93% percent lean)
1/2 cup minced yellow onion
1 large garlic clove, minced
1/8-1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 jalapeño finely chopped, seeds and membranes removed (be careful not to put your hands near your eyes!)
1/4 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese
1/8 cup panko bread crumbs (I used Ian’s gluten-free)
1 egg white, lightly beaten
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
Olive Oil (for brushing on burgers before grilling)
1/2 cup Hellman’s mayo
1-2 tablespoons sambal oelek (it’s spicy so test it out)
Combine all burger ingredients with a fork trying not to handle the meat too much. Shape loosely into 5 one inch patties and press a quarter size impression on top of each one (This is so they keep their shape on the grill). Preheat grill to 400 degrees. Brush a bit of olive oil on the outside of the burgers and cook about 6 -7 minutes per side or until they are cooked all the way through. Let rest for 5 minutes before serving.
Combine mayo and sambal oelek and smear on buns or english muffins.
Serve burgers with slices of avocado and ENJOY!