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Asian Turkey Burgers

April 21, 2010

It’s pretty rare that I make any kind of burger, but the great weather is calling for it and this recipe really

asian turkey burgers

spoke to me.  It’s a Jean-Gorges Vongerichten recipe that calls for- easily- making your own spicy ketchup (it reminded me of the sauce in a spicy tuna roll) and Asian flavored pickles.  It’s really easy and totally make-ahead, and worth the time.  His recipe from Food & Wine called for ground beef, but I changed that to ground turkey and added some more Asian flavors to the meat.  The patties turned out great- moist and really flavorful.  The grill was out of gas, so I used the grill pan on the stove and didn’t miss a thing.  Makes 4 burgers.


For the pickles:

1/2 c rice vinegar

3 T sugar

1 1/2 t kosher salt

1 Thai green or red chile, halved lengthwise

1 1/2 T fresh lime juice

1 small seedless cucumber, peeled and sliced crosswise 1/4 inch thick (1 cup) (I cheated and used a regular one)

For the dressing (this makes extra and you could cut in in half):

1/2 c ketchup

1/3 c mayonnaise

2 1/2 T finely chopped cornichons

1 T red wine vinegar

1 T white miso paste (or gojuchan, aka Korean hot pepper paste)

1 teaspoon Sriracha chile sauce

For the burgers:

1 1/4 lb ground turkey

1 T fish sauce

1 t grated ginger

1 clove garlic, minced

1 T cilantro, minced

4 hamburger buns or rolls


To make the pickles: In a saucepan, bring the vinegar, sugar, salt and chile to a boil.  Remove from the heat and let cool.  Add the lime juice and pour the brine over the cucumber slices.  Press the cucumber slices down into the liquid with a small plate and place a can on the plate; let stand at room temperature for 4 hours.

To make the dressing: In a bowl, combine the ketchup with the mayonnaise, cornichons, vinegar, miso and Sriracha and refrigerate until ready to use.

To make the burgers: Light a grill.  In a large bowl, combine the ground turkey with the fish sauce, ginger, garlic, cilantro and 1/4 t pepper and stir lightly until just combined.  Grill until done, or cook in a grill pan- about 5 minutes on each side until center is cooked through.

Serve the burgers on the buns topped with the sauce and pickles.

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