Dry No More

We all know no barbecue is complete without burgers. But burgers often conjure up visions of sky-high cholesterol and overweight children. If you love burgers but don’t want to add beef to your diet, go for turkey.

Wait, you say, turkey is dry as the desert! Not when you use the right recipe! In fact, turkey burgers will taste so good on your grill that no one will miss the meat. Choose ground dark turkey rather than white meat. You can also try these recipes using ground dark chicken for delicious results and less cholesterol.

Mushroom & Turkey Burgers

Mushrooms add meaty flavor and moisture to the turkey

  • 1½ pounds ground dark turkey
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 ¼ teaspoon black pepper, freshly ground, divided
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil
  • ¾ pound fresh mushrooms, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • ¼ cup sliced scallions
  • 4 large burger buns
  • 4 large slice tomato
  • for mayonnaise:
  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon mustard

Prepare the stuffing:

In a medium skillet heat oil until very hot. Add mushrooms. Cook 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. mAdd garlic; cook 8 to 10 minutes until lightly browned and liquid has evaporated. Stir in scallions and 1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Set aside and let cool.

In a mixing bowl, gently mix together turkey, soy sauce, 3/4 teaspoon pepper and salt. Using 1/3 cup of mixture, shape into eight 4 1/2” patties approximately 3/8” thick.

Preheat your grill until hot. Turn down the burners to medium. Mound 1/4 cup filing in the center of 4 patties. Cover with remaining patties. Seal edges by pressing firmly with fingers. Gently press center to flatten the burger slightly.

Gently place burgers on the grill (or oven rack). If you are using a charcoal grill, place the burgers 4 to 6 inches from coals. Cover grill. Grill 8-10 minutes or until cooked through and no longer pink in the center.

Prepare mayonnaise:

Whisk together mayonnaise, soy sauce and mustard. Place buns on grill; grill 1 minute or until lightly toasted. Spread each bun with 2 tablespoons mayonnaise. Top with burgers and a tomato slice.

Moistest Turkey Burgers

The secret to these delicious burgers will surprise you!

  • 1 small avocado
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 2 tablespoons light olive oil, plus more
  • 2 teaspoons Sriracha, divided
  • 1½ teaspoons kosher salt, plus more
  • 1 small red onion, divided
  • 1 lb. ground turkey
  • 4 hamburger or pretzel buns, toasted
  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • Sliced tomatoes, red onion and pickles

Mash avocado with a fork in a medium bowl until smooth. Add soy sauce, garlic powder, cumin, olive oil 1 teaspoon Sriracha, and salt. Grate the onion into the bowl. Mix with a fork to combine. Add turkey and mix thoroughly until combined.

Drizzle a bit of oil on a large plate. Using damp hands, form turkey mixture into 4 balls, place on the plate, and press down into patties 4”-4.5” across. They look large but will shrink as they cook. Chill the burgers at least 10 minutes and up to 2 hours.

Meanwhile, stir mayonnaise and remaining Sriracha in a small bowl and season with a pinch of salt.

Heat the grill to high and wipe the grates with an oil-dampened paper towel. Lower to medium-high.

Place the burgers carefully on the grate and cook until dark brown underneath and they release easily, about 5 minutes. Turn and cook on second side until burgers are fully cooked, about 5 minutes more. Transfer to a wire rack and let rest while you finish assembling.

Slice open a bun and spread with 2 tablespoons sriracha mayonnaise. Place a burger on the mayo and add sliced vegetables and pickles. Serve and enjoy.

Many ingredients are prone to infestation. Please consult a local Rav for specific guidelines on how to avoid transgressions related to insects.

Readers may submit questions to the Culinary Connoisseur, c/o Hamodia, 207 Foster Avenue, Brooklyn, N.Y. 11230 or via e-mail to peppermill@hamodia.com. This weekly column has been brought to you by The Peppermill, the world’s first kosher kitchenware store, located at 5015 16th Avenue, Brooklyn, N.Y. (718) 871-4022. You can also read a selection of previous columns in their comprehensive cookbook, The Culinary Connoisseur, available now at your local Judaica and kitchenware stores. Jam-packed with delicious recipes, insightful food information and helpful cooking tips, this book is certain to become your constant companion in the kitchen.