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Turkey Burger | Habanero BBQ Sauce | Crispy Bacon

December 17, 2011


You might think after Thanksgiving that I would be turkey-d out. I ate turkey for days – in sandwiches, in chili, in soup. But alas, when it comes to burgers, I get weak in the knees.

I can’t resist them. And when my friends were coming over on Sunday to watch some football, it was really just an excuse for me to fire up the grill (even in this chilly weather) and crank out some burgers.

They are all spicy food lovers (as you can imagine most Indian people are), so I made a really quick habanero BBQ sauce and put some bacon in the oven as the charcoal was doing it’s thing in the chimney starter.

This BBQ sauce could pretty much go on anything – on a burger, on some chicken, or sloppy joes! It’s really quite tasty and has a nice balance of spicy and sweet.

When grilling turkey burgers, I always recommend to get the ground dark meat as it is a lot juicier than ground white meat. You have to keep an eye on the burgers because they can overcook in an instant.

Turkey Burgers | Homemade Habanero BBQ Sauce | Crispy Bacon

(Recipe courtesy of Vivek Surti)

For the sauce:

1 onion, chopped

2 cloves of garlic, chopped

1 tsp chopped fresh thyme

3 habanero chiles, chopped (you can take the seeds out if you want…but why would you?)

1 tsp ground coriander

1 T ancho chile powder

1 tsp ground cumin

1/4 cup dark brown sugar

1/4 cup sorghum (or molasses)

1/4 cup apple cider vinegar

1 28 oz can whole peeled tomatoes, pureed in a blender

kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Saute the onion in a little bit of oil over medium heat. When the onion is translucent, add the garlic, thyme, and habanero and cook for about 2-3 minutes until fragrant. Add the coriander, cumin, and ancho chile powder and cook for another minute. Add the pureed tomatoes and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to simmer and add the brown sugar, sorghum, and vinegar. Let cook for about 30 minutes on simmer until the sauce becomes thicker.

Put everything in the blender and buzz the sauce until it’s smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper. If it’s too spicy for you, feel free to add more sugar or sorghum.

For the burgers:

1 lb. ground dark turkey meat, separated into 1/4 lb pieces and formed into patties

4 slices pepper jack cheese

kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

4 hamburger buns

8 slices of bacon, cooked

Heat your grill to high. Season the turkey with salt and pepper aggressively on both sides. Brush them with oil and lay them on the hottest part of the grill and let cook until a nice crust has formed on one side, about 4-5 minutes. Flip the burger over and move to a spot where the heat is medium, cover with cheese, and then cover the grill. Cook until the cheese is melted and the burger is cooked through, another 4-5 minutes. Remove from the grill and let rest for about 2 minutes. Toast the buns on the grill if you wish.

When assembling, top the burger with BBQ sauce, some crispy bacon, and lettuce, because well, we all need something green.




4 Comments leave one →
  1. December 19, 2011 5:28 AM

    Tummy growling…

    • December 21, 2011 5:53 PM

      I hear you movita! Have you had a chance to try out the recipe?

  2. December 22, 2011 1:17 AM

    Great combo of flavors! Wow!

  3. December 30, 2011 10:42 AM

    Great blog! Can’t wait to try this recipe. Love the spicy twist to a game day favorite!

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