Test Kitchen - Turkey Sausage Burger Patties

My Test Kitchen ingredient this past week was fennel seed. The first thought that came to mind (and apparently to others' minds) was to experiment with making sausage. My thanks to Michael and Katherine for contributing their suggestions of sausage too. Unfortunately, I do not have a meat grinder or something to encase sausage; however, there is always the possibility of making sausage patties! So, I researched a little bit and came up with a neato recipe based on general things I hoped would taste good together. It passed Duc's taste test so I guess it must be good. Give these a shot! We placed the patties between whole wheat sandwich thins from Costco, fresh kale, thinly sliced red onion, and juicy tomatoes.

Step 1: Ingredients (yields 12-16 hefty patties)
  • 3 lbs ground turkey, high percentage fat
  • 1 red bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 2 yellow onions, finely chopped
  • 1 handful flat-leaf/Italian parsley, roughly chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1.5 tbsps fennel seed
  • 1.5 tbsps garlic salt
  • 2 tbsps paprika
  • 1 tbsp crushed chili peppers
  • 1 tbsp cayenne pepper
  • 2 tsps dried oregano
  • 2 tsps dried thyme
  • 2 tsps black pepper
  • 2 tsps chili powder

Step 2: Prepping ingredients
The most difficult part of this sausage making is probably getting everything to the right size for incorporating into sausage. You don't want the onions and peppers too thick or else they won't bind together well with the sausage patty which is already naturally thin because it is made of turkey instead of pork. We used our cheating chopper machine but you can use whatever you have on had. Just make sure that your vegetables are properly sized! Finely mince your garlic as well. 

Step 3: Mixing & shaping
To be put fairly simply, mix all of the above-listed ingredients together! It may require some time as you will need to make sure everything is evenly distributed (and what a long list of spices it is!). Then, start shaping the patties in the palm of your hand to approximately 1/4 or 1/5 lb sizes. If you are storing away, make sure to have a divider of some sort when stacking such as parchment paper, wax paper, or even plastic wrap.


Step 4: Finishing
Hopefully your mixture has stayed cold. If not, make sure it is cold prior to frying.  In a large skillet/frying pan, pour enough oil to provide a thin layer on top. Heat at medium-high heat until hot and then add patties. Cook thoroughly prior to removing from heat. If you are making burgers, arrange patty between vegetables & buns and enjoy!


This week's Test Kitchen ingredient: maple syrup
The maple syrup pick for this week comes from my Vancouver trip! Check out the description below and picture (with Murray the moose) on what the ingredient will be. Then, comment on Facebook on what you'd like to see me do with it!

"Maple Syrup is a pure, natural, and nutritious delicacy from Canada that is coveted by many as the finest flavor in the world. Early settlers to our shores were shown by the Indians how to make maple syrup and to this day the process remains virtually unchanged. Pure Maple Syrup is truly Nature's sweetener. Maple Syrup is a 100% pure and natural food that is processed by heat with no added ingredients. It is primarily a simple form of sugar (or 95% sucrose), but with the lowest caloric value of any of the natural sweeteners at 40 calories per tablespoon. This is much lower to honey, which is 64 calories/tablespoon, or corn syrup at 60 calories/tablespoon. There are two grades of syrup that our site offers: a light grade and a medium grade. The only difference is that the light syrup has a subtler flavor than the medium syrup due to the fact it is extracted at an earlier time of year in comparison to the medium grade. Since the medium-grade syrup is extracted at a later time in the year than the light-grade syrup, the microbes grow more quickly, and hence the flavor and texture increases." [Hudson House]

Photography by Minerva Thai and Duc Duong.