Saturday, September 28, 2013

Green Curry Turkey Burgers with Asian-Style Cucumber Relish - Outdoor Wednesday

This was intended to be a competition burger but our travel plans assure that, even if chosen, we'll be no where near the Napa Valley when the Build a Better Burger cook-off is held. A person younger than myself might decide to save the recipe for another year, but I've reached an age where that doesn't make a lot of sense, and I'd rather share it with you now than see it sit in limbo for another year. This is really easy to do. While the relish is best made several hours before assembling the burgers, their actual construction takes minutes and uses ingredients that can be found in any large grocery store. While the burgers look all-American , they are really Thai-inspired and capture the hot, sweet, sour and salty tastes that are the hallmark of Thai cooking. I have fudged a bit here and have used a range of measures for the green curry paste that's used to flavor the sauce and add heat to the burgers. Commercially made curry paste tends to be very hot and can kill the taste buds very quickly. If you are not familiar with it, start with the smaller amount and taste carefully as you go along. The goal here is a warming heat, not fire. The burgers can be cooked stovetop or on a grill. They should be turned only once. They are moist burgers and will fall part if you play with them too much. I usually serve these on a brioche-type roll, but any bread with a soft crust can be used. I think you'll like these burgers. Here's the recipe.

Green Curry Turkey Burgers with Asian-Style Cucumber Relish


1 large English cucumber, cut in 1/4 to 1/2-inch dice

1/4 cup finely minced red onion

2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh hot green chilies

1/2 cup white vinegar

1/2 cup water

1/2 cup sugar

2 teaspoons salt, divided use

1 cup mayonnaise

1 to 3 teaspoons Thai-style green curry paste

1-1/4 pounds ground turkey meat (I prefer thighs)

4 lightly toasted brioche-style rolls

Garnish: Cilantro sprigs


1) Combine vinegar, water, sugar and 1 teaspoon salt in a medium sauce pan and cook, stirring occasionally, over moderate heat until sugar dissolves, about 4 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool to room temperature.

2) Combine cucumbers, onions and chiles in a small bowl. Cover with cooled dressing and chill for several hours.

3) Combine mayonnaise, green curry paste and reserved 1 teaspoon salt in a small bowl. Mix well. Remove 1/4 cup of sauce to another small bowl and stir 1/2 cup drained cucumber relish into it.

4) Add relish mixture to ground turkey and mix just until combined. Shape into 4 patties. In a large nonstick skillet set over medium-high heat, cook patties for 4 minutes on each side. Spread reserved mayonnaise mixture on top and bottom of warm rolls. Place a pattie on bottom half of each roll and cover with relish and sprigs of cilantro. Set roll tops in place and serve. Yield: 4 servings.

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