Sandwich #119:–“If It’s Bad, We’ll Order Takeout” Mexican Turkey Burgers

By 300 Sandwiches

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DSC_0690We were majorly hung over. Two nights ago, we went out with well-intentioned but highly demanding friends who grilled E about the whole wedding thing. “When are you going to get married? What are you waiting for? This sandwich thing is for the birds! I’ll make you three hundred sandwiches in my kitchen this weekend! I’ll hire some cooks to help me!” the friends asked repeatedly.

E, sitting exposed like a baby deer in an unruly forest, was able to laugh off the inquisition. But with each demand to know his intentions for our future, E nervously knocked back another Johnnie Walker Black. I sat at the opposite end of the table from him, but I had to gulp down a martini after ovehearing bits of the conversation. It was a miracle both of us able to make it home without passing out in the cab.

The next day, E declared the obvious: “I drank too much.”

I, too wasn’t feeling well, so in need of a sponge to soak up some of the wine leftover in my own system that I had Chipotle for lunch. I eat there maybe twice a year, always after a major night out (it’s as if they put sober seasoning in those burrito bowls). But Mexican got me inspired to make something easy, hangover-friendly and fast for dinner. We had turkey meat in the fridge from last weekend’s shopping. Mexican turkey burgers. That’ll work.

I gathered up what I needed and was about to start cooking, while E sat on the couch reading his iPad, whining, moaning. Then I sat on the couch. I whined. Then moaned, “Maybe we should go out.”
“Okay,” E agreed. I felt guilty.
“No, I should cook,” I said.
“Are you sure?”
Sigh. “No.” My hangover made me indecisive. It was 9:15PM. I should at least try to cook.

I started mixing all of the meat and veggies together. When I started to form the patties out of that raw meat and veggies, I fell out of love with the meal. It didn’t look appetizing.

“We might be ordering on tonight,” I said, with sad puppy dog eyes. E looked even sadder. I fired up the skillet and marched forth making the burgers.

Twenty minutes later, the turkey patties were ready. I split one in half so we could make sure they were edible. “It’s not bad,” I said. “Maybe we don’t need to order takeout.”

E added some habanero sauce to his for extra kick, then took a bite. “Delish.” It actually was. The salsa and habanero helped bring the burger together. It was spicy, but the warm meat and crunch of the English muffin was comforting to our tired bodies. We ate quickly. “I needed that,” E said as he leaned back on the couch.

We rinsed down the burgers with a glass of wine. Hair of the dog, E said. Anything to lesson the pain of the hangover. And the agony of doing the dishes.

1/4 cup tomatillo salsa (look for the seedy and spicy stuff)
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
1 slice white bread
1/2 onion, finely chopped
1/2 red bell pepper, finely chopped
1/2 green bell pepper, finely chopped
2 teaspoons fajita or taco seasoning
1/4 teaspoon salt, divided
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 pound ground turkey
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 egg white
6 English muffins, toasted
1 cup greens
1 half red onion, sliced
1 teaspoon habanero spread
1 tablespoon sour cream (optional)

In a small blender or food processor, pulse the bread so it crumbs and set aside.
In a skillet, sautee the onion, red and green peppers with about a tablespoon of olive oil over low heat. Mix in 1/2 teaspoon of taco or fajita seasoning. Remove from heat. Mix the bread crumbs, cilantro, onion and peppers, tomato paste, salt,turkey, and egg white into a large bowl. Form 6-8 burger patties from the mixture.

Brown the patties on medium heat for about 4-6 minutes on each side, flipping once. Remove from heat onto a paper towel lined plate. Toast English muffins. Lay out on plate, and layer lettuce leaves on the bottom halves of English muffins. Then scoop on salsa. Place burger patty on top. Layer on pieces of red onion and a dollop of salsa. Spread a smidge of habanero spread on each burger, for an extra spicy kick. Add sour cream if you like (helps cut that spicyness), and top with top of English muffin. Serve. Makes 6 medium sized burgers.

Recipe inspired by this goodness.

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