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Friday, June 20, 2008

Big Bird Burger: Jumbo Chicken, Spinach, and Herb Burgers

We threw these burgers on the grill instead of the skillet and I halved the recipe for the two of us. It is a very thick burger, so next time I would make them about half as thick as it says: Too. Much. Food. But - I got to use fresh herbs from my garden - Bonus!

Ingredients:
1 10-ounce box frozen chopped spinach, defrosted
2 pounds ground chicken breast
1 shallot, finely chopped
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard, plus some for slathering on the rolls
10 leaves of fresh basil, shredded or torn
3 tablespoons fresh flat-leaf parsley (a handful), chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO), plus some for drizzling
20 white button mushrooms, thinly sliced
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1/2 cup dry white wine or chicken stock
4 slices Swiss cheese, from the deli counter
4 kaiser rolls or sandwich-size sourdough English muffins, split and toasted
4 red or green leaf lettuce leaves
1 vine-ripe tomato, thinly sliced


Directions:
1. Preheat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat.

2. Arrange the defrosted chopped spinach in the center of a kitchen towel. Wrap the towel around the spinach and squeeze out the excess liquid. Put the spinach in a mixing bowl and combine with the chicken, shallots, 2 tablespoons of Dijon mustard, basil, parsley, salt, and pepper. Score the meat with the side of your hand to separate into 4 equal portions. Make 4 large patties, 3/4 to 1 inch thick. Drizzle the patties with oil and place them in the hot skillet Cook for 6 to 7 minutes on each side, until the chicken is cooked through.

3. Preheat a second medium-sized skillet over medium-high heat with 2 tablespoons of EVOO, twice around the pan. Add the sliced mushrooms and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, for 4 to 5 minutes, or until the mushrooms are nice and brown. Season the 'shrooms with salt and pepper. Add the wine or broth and cook until the pan is almost dry, about 2 minutes.

4. Top the big-bird burgers wth the mushroom topping and the Swiss cheese. Fold each slice of cheese in half to fit the burger, if necessary. Cover loosely with aluminum foil. Turn off the pan and let the cheese melt, about 2 minutes.

5. Slather the tops of the buns or English muffins with a little mustard. Place the burgers on the bun bottoms and top with lettuce and tomato. Put the bun or muffin tops in place.



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