The Oprah Show was playing in the background, as I sat at my kitchen table with a stack of cookbooks trying to gain some inspiration for dinner. I was on a quest to find something different for dinner that was reasonably simple to prepare, did not require a ton of ingredients, and was on the healthier side. Then I heard Oprah say, “I believe [it] may be the best turkey burger in the entire world.” I thought to myself, “Good turkey burgers? Is there such a thing?” Because they lack a significant amount of fat, I was under the impression that turkey burgers were dry and flavorless unless you added back a lot of “bad” stuff. Oprah brought Jeff O’Neill, the chef from Donald Trump’s private club Mar-a-Lago, on her show to prepare the burgers on stage. His turkey burgers looked juicy and had ingredients that were different from other burgers. I sped off to the market to pick up a few ingredients and zipped back home to test the recipe and to find out if Oprah’s praise for these burgers was deserved or not. They did not disappoint and they are among my daughter’s friends’ favorites when they come to visit.
Mar-a-Lago Turkey Burgers
1/4 cup thinly sliced scallions
1/2 cup finely chopped celery
3 Granny Smith apples, peeled and diced
1/8 cup canola oil
4 pounds ground turkey breast
2 Tbsp. salt
1 Tbsp. black pepper
2 tsp. Tabasco® chipotle pepper sauce
1 lemon, juiced and grated zest
1/2 bunch parsley, finely chopped
1/4 cup Major Grey’s Chutney, pureed
Sauté the scallions, celery and apples in the canola oil until tender. Let cool.
Place the ground turkey in a large mixing bowl. Add sautéed items and the remaining ingredients. Shape into eight 8-ounce burgers. Refrigerate for 2 hours.
Season the turkey burgers with salt and pepper. Place on a preheated, lightly oiled grill. Grill each side for 7 minutes until meat is thoroughly cooked. Let sit for 5 minutes.
Linnell’s Notes: I never add the full 2 tablespoons of salt, however, my taste buds have adjusted to a lower sodium diet. Also, depending on how chunky the chutney is, sometimes I puree it and sometimes I don’t. I also play with the amounts of apple, celery and green onion. If I have a bit more than the required measurements leftover, such as a few slices of apple, half a celery stalk or a green onion, I go ahead and add them. The last time I made these I only had 2 pounds of ground turkey and I made at least six patties. My husband usually grills the burgers for 4-5 minutes on each side and not the 7 minutes mentioned in the instructions. Of course, this is all a function of how thick you make your patties.
Enjoy this great recipe!