Best Turkey Burgers – Friday Foodstuffs

Secrets to the best turkey burgers |

My fridge was barren, like Revenant barren. Remnant tomato paste, whole coffee beans, yogurt and a few slices of deli ham would make a horrible challenge basket for a cooking battle. But my freezer was a treasure trove of meal-worthy food. When you’re unemployed your freezer drawers replace the aisles of a grocery. Like Old Man Parker discovering a Red Ryder model air rifle behind a couch, I found ground turkey buried in my freezer. But I needed one crucial ingredient to make the best turkey burgers.

Scrounging around I found a link of chorizo and with that the gears started turning on what to make for dinner.

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Bacon Pesto Turkey Burgers

pesto turkey burger

Here’s a quick pesto turkey burger recipe with pesto and bacon. What more could you want? Two of them is the correct answer.

I’ve been under the weather the past few days. According to Timehop, I normally get sick around this time of year. I have tired of canned sodium and wanted to use this ground turkey before it went bad and I hated myself for wasting $4.

So, here’s what you need: cast iron skillet. Check out my other love notes to cast iron skillets.

I started by frying up bacon. While that fries and renders, mix an egg and finely chopped onion with the turkey. Season with salt and pepper. Turkey is super lean so you need to add fat, otherwise you’ll end up with what tastes like dry toast. I add breadcrumbs to help bind the burgers together. Think of them as a mini meatloaf.  Get in there with your hands and be sure to wash them when you’re done. (Your hands. Not the burgers.)

Form patties. Remove the bacon. Place the turkey burger patties into the bacon fat. Unlike beef, you need to cook turkey until it’s completely done. Medium rare isnt a thing with turkey. And there’s nothing manly about food poisoning.

Typically, I cook turkey burgers for close to 10 minutes total. Once the meat is done, remove them to a paper towel and add in onions and mushrooms to the pan. They’ll pick up the flavors and help clean the pan. Think of it as cast iron magic.

Toast a bun. Slather on some pesto. I like a pre-made can from Aldi. Place burger on bun. Top with onions, mushrooms and bacon.

Enjoy knowing you don’t have to clean a pan.  

Shake Shack Arrives in Chicago | An Apology to Arteries


“It’s been like this every day since we opened a week ago. 11AM to 11PM.”

That’s what the menu hander outer woman said to the woman behind me in line.

Going with coworkers for lunch I was the lucky one, a rare occurrence. I had previously experienced the shake shack in NYC. I waited there and I waited in Chicago. Even comparison. It was a cold December day in NYC when I first experienced the rapture in my mouth.

There aren’t many things I’m willing to wait for. Shake Shack is worth the wait, if for no other reason than your appetite will be at its all-time zenith as you smell the sizzling meat and your gastric juices start eating away at dignity. I would not go every day or on a regular occurrence. The novelty and anticipation are the main draws. It has been nearly three years since I first stepped foot in the burger joint.

By the time you get to the counter, which is running full steam with four cashiers to take your burger bucks, you are famished and likely will order more than a human should consume in one sitting. Double cheeseburger? Sure. Add bacon? Who needs clear arteries?

Everyone I’ve surveyed admitted to skipping dinner after a shake shack lunch. It is everything a burger should be: tender, warm bun, crispy, salty meat, gooey cheese and crisp lettuce. My only regret was eating my shake stack too quickly and knowing it’ll be an hour from getting in line to inhaling another delectable burger.


Turkey Burgers for Ollie & Moses

Starting dinner after getting home from the gym usually doesn’t bode well, especially when you’re racing a storm that has been described as Biblical.

After a trip to Target (yogurt, protein bars and ground turkey) and a forgettable workout, I sped home switching between looking at the road and doomsday sky. The rain started to pick up after I saw the sign for my exit ramp on the expressway. A 7-yard sprint was the last event in my Monday pentathlon. I narrowly dodged the sideways rain and hustled inside to start dinner.

I fired up the cast iron skillet. Then added diced onion, a beaten egg, breadcrumbs and some grilling seasoning to the turkey meat before mixing with my hands. The skillet was hell hot and the burgers were ready to go.

In my haste and hunger I made a few massive burgers, which ended up being halved to ensure they cooked fully and didn’t send me to meet Moses or St. Peter.

Turkey burgers present some challenges that beef doesn’t:

There is no medium rare for turkey.

Turkey is leaner, and that means less moist. That’s why I add the egg and onions.

There isn’t a ton of flavor in the bird, so it’s a chance to get creative. I went tame tonight: Grilled onions & mushrooms with some basil and pecorino.

Other options abound. Pick a cuisine: Asian, Mexican, Italian, Indian. Blank canvas with turkey burgers.

Since this could’ve been my last meal, naturally, I opted to serve mine on a warmed tortilla, but you do you.

28 tortillas left. #Tortillachallenge