The word turkey burger is very evocative for me. They were a staple of lunchtime menus at junior school, a small thin patty of meat surrounded by lightly spiced crumbs in a large seeded bun. They were delicious but after many years the texture started to grate a little, the finely ground meat sticking in my throat and making me feel slightly nauseous. These are not those burgers. In fact they have little in common with pretty much any burger you can buy ready made. These are defiantly home-made, original and ever so slightly exotic. If you’re not going away anywhere these bank holiday weekends, make some of these, match with a nice crisp wine (or some ouzo, if you prefer) and pretend you’re in the Med.
Greek Turkey burgers
Adapted from Pinch My Salt
1 tablespoon green olives, pitted and finely chopped
50g feta cheese, crumbled
3 spring onions, green and white parts, finely chopped
250g turkey mince
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 tablespoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
Handful fresh parsley, finely chopped
1. Finely dice the olives and crumble the feta into a large bowl. Add all the other ingredients and season well with salt and pepper. Get your hands in the bowl and break up the turkey mince with your fingers and mix everything together really well. Then shape the mixture into 4 burgers, making sure they are approximately twice as wide as they are thick. Chill in the fridge for 30 minutes (they’ll keep their shape better when cooked if you do this).
2. Preheat the oven to 180 C. Transfer the burgers to a baking tray, or grill tray and bake in the oven for 20 minutes. After twenty minutes flip them over, drain off any excess fat in the tray and put them under the grill to brown them off nicely. Alternatively, you can grill them from the start, but make sure they are fully cooked all the way through.
3. Serve with a green salad (the original recipe suggests tzatziki which I think would be a lovely addition).
Makes 4 small burgers.