Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Greek Turkey Burgers

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I know, you immediately think of dry tasteless burgers.  I used to make the one from Mira Lago that Oprah spoke of, but Christina doesn't like any fruit in her food. This recipe from Sara Moulton was published in our paper, and I cut it out.  When I lost it I went to the online archives and couldn't find it.  So thankfully other papers ran the same AP story.  There is nothing earth shattering about this recipe, but I am going to tell you we love these burgers.  We really, really, love the sauce.  Of course, I can never leave well enough alone, so I did make a few changes. 

The first was to double (or more) the recipe.  I have a hamburger press and hamburger papers so I make a dozen or so and freeze them between the squares of wax paper.  Christina and I could chip one off the stack and cook it up at a moment's notice.  I haven't tried them on the grill, turkey generally falls apart there, so I just pan fry in a little coconut oil.

And the sauce.  The delicious sauce.  Skip the ketchup, mustard and mayonnaise.  This sauce is blissful.  Not a tzatziki per se, but similar.  Yet so different.  We sometimes skip the bun (not Mr. Preppy) and the feta on the burger, and  I don't miss either one.  Here is my version, the original can be found here, in the Santa Cruz Paper.

Greek Turkey Burgers
adapted from Sara Moulton

1 pound package white ground turkey
1 pound package regular ground turkey
1 chopped, yellow onion
the largest bag of spinach available (at least 10 ounces) The more greens, the healthier!
1 clove garlic, minced
salt and pepper
1 teaspoon Cavender's Greek Seasoning
Coconut oil


Saute the onion in coconut oil until translucent.  Add garlic and quickly cook without burning.  Add spinach in batches, adding more as it wilts and sprinkling S&P and Cavender's.  Cover with lid to speed up wilting, and stir to mix all ingredients.  I have been known to add kale, arugula or any other green wilting away in my produce drawer.  Red peppers? Mushrooms?  Why not!!  Take off the heat and let it cool.

In a small bowl combine:

2 cartons of Non Fat Plain Greek Yogurt, 6 oz. each
1/4 cup Lemonaise  (from the Ojai Cook...amazing stuff)
1/4 cup diced pepperoncini (it's easy to dice if you buy them sliced)
1 clove garlic, minced
1 Tablespoon dried oregano or 2T fresh
lemon juice or pepperoncini juice to thin
Fresh Ground Pepper

Mix all ingredients in a bowl, and cover and chill.  It gets better in an hour or so.  We love the pepperoncini so we add a lot, it is your preference.  You can certainly up the mayo, or use regular mayo and add more lemon juice.  I've added kalamata olives to it, fresh parsley, pimientos even green onions.  All I can say is make extra.  We dip cucumbers in it, crackers, spread it on a turkey sandwich and eat it off a spoon.  It's that good.

When your veggies are room temp, mix them with the turkey in a bowl so they are all distributed.  The spinach will be stringy and that's ok.  Patty your burgers and either cook immediately or freeze for later.

I saute the burgers in a pan, stovetop, in a little coconut oil. Cook on a medium low so the outsides don't overcook before the insides are done. Serve with the amazing sauce, with or without a bun and Feta.   Open a chilled white and invite me over for dinner!  What are you waiting for?  Get in there and cook!

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