What Kind of Hamburger Do You Like?

It’s always the simplest foods that cause the biggest problems. Like hamburgers. You’d think it would be easy to make a patty out of a hunk of meat and then grill it. But NO! First you have to decide what kind of beef you like — like chuck or sirloin (or my favorite, a combo of brisket and chuck) — or even if you want beef at all. Because there’s turkey burgers, chicken burgers, veggie burgers and so on.

Then there’s whether you grill it or fry it. Rare or well-done. Ketchup or Russian dressing.

The choices go on and on.

That’s why there are so many food writers writing about it. 

I cooked hamburgers only occasionally when the kids were growing up. They just weren’t favorites at our house and we all liked them different ways so it was more trouble than it was worth. But once, my daughter Gillian came home from a friend’s house and said she had the best hamburger ever! So I called the friend’s mother to ask for her recipe and she told me she got the pre-made frozen patties that came in the 5-pound box. 

Not my style. 

We’re still not big burger eaters in our family. But last weekend, being July 4th and all, it seemed the right time to make them. On Monday I made hot dogs, some beef burgers and also these turkey burgers, from a recipe given to me by my daughter Gillian (who once liked that frozen patty). 

The people who tried them all said they were juicy and delicious (the beef burger and hot dog people wouldn’t even have a taste). The apple and spinach help to keep turkey, which is lean, moist and succulent. Here’s the recipe. See for yourself.

Turkey Burgers with Apple and Spinach

2-6 tablespoons olive oil

1 large onion, finely chopped

2-1/2 pounds ground turkey

1 granny smith apple, peeled and cored

1 cup chopped spinach

2 tablespoons chopped fresh sage

4 large eggs

1-1/2 cups Panko

salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a saute pan over medium heat. Add the onion, cook for 4-5 minutes or until soft and beginning to brown. Remove the pan from the heat and set aside. Place the ground turkey in a large bowl. Grate the apple into the bowl. Add the spinach, sage, eggs, Panko, the sauteed onions and salt and pepper to taste. Mix thoroughly and form into patties. Grill the patties for 3-5 minutes per side (depending on thickness) or until cooked through. OR: to saute, heat the remaining olive oil in a saute pan over medium heat and cook for 3-5 minutes per side or until cooked through. Makes 8 servings