We all know turkey can be good. I mean come on, there’s an entire day devoted to eating it. What’s not to love? Moist, delicious, roast turkey, served with every possible delicious side you could ever want…is it November yet?
Now, let’s be honest. Aside from the occasional deli sandwich how many of you eat turkey on a regular basis? My guess is not that many. I remember when turkey burgers became popular, and everyone tried to make them taste like a beef burger. As it turns out, turkey tastes nothing like beef. You cannot slap a slice of cheese on a turkey burger and call it a day. Turkey, unless it’s smoked, roasted, or done up with some other elaborate cooking method, it is generally pretty bland (hello gravy). BUT this does not mean turkey burgers can’t be delicious! They really can be, and what’s awesome about turkey is that they are a kind of blank slate; you can do almost anything with them. For example, this burger; spinach and feta are wonderful with turkey, but the flavors would be lost with hamburger.
I did a fair amount of research for this burger, and almost every recipe I found recommended using frozen spinach. I have nothing against frozen spinach, but by the time you defrost it and squeeze out all the moisture I have gone through almost an entire roll of paper towel. The other great thing about wilting fresh spinach for this is you can infuse it with garlic flavor- and who doesn’t love that?
I topped these burgers with a thick slice of grilled tomato, a handful of arugula, and a spoonful of tzatziki sauce.
Spinach and Feta Turkey burgers
1 ½ Lbs ground turkey
1 bag baby spinach (usually bout 6-7 oz)
1 large clove of garlic, minced or pressed
1 Tbs of olive oil
¾ cup block feta, crumbled
¼ tsp red pepper flakes
1 tsp salt
½ tsp freshly ground pepper
2 tsp freshly chopped dill
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 Large tomato, beef steak if you can find it, sliced thick
If you are planning on making the tzatziki sauce, make it before the burgers- recipe follows.
Heat olive oil in a large skillet and lightly sauté the garlic until fragrant. Add the spinach and cook over medium heat until wilted.
Remove the skillet from heat and move the spinach and garlic to a large bowl, drain off any excess liquid. Add ground turkey, spices, egg, and feta, and mix with your hands until thoroughly combined.
Form into 4-5 patties depending on your liking and bun size.
Heat grill to medium . Cook each burger for about 6 minutes on each side or until the meat is completely cooked through.
In the last two minutes of grilling add the thick slices of tomato to the grill, grill for 1 minute on each side. Also toast the buns if you desire (just do it).
To serve, place on burger on each plate, top with grilled tomato, a handful of arugula, and a spoonful of tzatziki.
1 ½ cups Greek yogurt (I use 0%)
1 Tbs dill
1 Large clove of garlic, minced or pressed
1 large cucumber, seeded and diced small
Juice of one lemon
1 tsp salt, or more to taste
Mix all ingredients in a bowl and let marry for at least 30 minutes before serving.
A few notes:
I like a chunky tzatziki sauce. Many recipes call for you to grate the cucumber, which you can of course do, but I like the chunks. It is also extremely important to seed the cucumbers or the sauce will be way too watery. It can also be helpful to salt the cucumbers and let them sit in a strainer to draw out some of the moisture.
This burger could also be topped with a slice of roasted red pepper, which is a very common Mediterranean flavor. Bell peppers and I don’t get along very well, so that is why I chose tomato.
A little bit of thinly sliced red onion would also be delicious.
I had grand ideas of making a roasted red pepper and pepperoncini mayo to go with it, but I didn’t have enough mayo. If I try that next time I’ll let you know how it turns out.
I served this with zucchini oven “fries”- recipe coming soon.