If I had a more sophisticated list of “categories” in my sidebar thingamabobber, I’d have “Effortless Gourmet,” and this post would most definitely go under there. ’Cause, really now: You cook up a burger. Slap on some arugula just as you would iceberg lettuce. Slice some apple, just as you would slice a tomato. Top the thing with delicious sharp white cheddar, which is no different from topping the thing with a Kraft single. But this tastes much more special–I suppose the effort goes into the thinking rather than the doing, which is right at home with me.
The first time I decided I wanted to put all this stuff on a burger, I included caramelized onions, and while it was delicious, the flavor masked the more delicate peppery nuttiness of arugula and the bright tart flavor of fresh Granny Smith apple. This is a delicate balance of flavor, and you know… I really, really like it.
I’ve experimented with burgers before (college–you know how it goes), and though this isn’t a set-in-stone opinion, I tend to believe that the best way to prepare the actual patty only involves meat, salt and pepper. The onion, garlic, bell peppers, salsa, cheeses, egg, bread crumbs, other superfluous THINGS some people swear by… I dunno. The final product reminds me of meatloaf. Some swear that adding all this extra stuff keeps burgers–turkey burgers in particular–moist. But really, the single most important thing to do to ensure moistness of a turkey burger is to take it off the grill the very second (I’m exaggerating only slightly) the last of the pink color disappears.
What can I say about this cheese? Crumbly, sharp as a tack (bad conversationalist, though) and scrumptious.
A mandoline slicer is just one of those kitchen toys that isn’t really necessary but gives me endless joy in the small, ultimately meaningless things. Look at how even and pretty this is… Worth it. Definitely worth it.
As I was saying… No reason to be afraid of choke-on-them dry turkey burgers. Just watch them like a hawk. You can also use your other senses. Poke them and see if they feel squishy; once they’re firm and no longer pink, those bad boys are done. Keep in mind also that hot things keep cooking once you remove them from the heat.
Turkey Burgers with Green Apples, White Cheddar and Arugula
1 lb or so ground turkey (if available, get a combination of dark and white meat)
1 small Granny Smith apple, sliced
About 2 oz. sharp white cheddar, sliced
1 handful arugula
3 hamburger buns
Salt and pepper to taste
(Am I really writing out a recipe for this? Seems unnecessary, and I’m sorry–I know it’s a total “duh.”)
Anyway. Season turkey with salt and pepper, mix well and form 3 patties. Grill patties on medium-high heat for roughly 4 or so minutes per side. Lightly toast buns and top with arugula, then the patties. Top with cheese and apples. Serve with sweet potato fries if you’re the kind of person who’s into delicious things. Makes 3.