It was one of those days when I was walking through Whole Foods and I could not figure out what to make for dinner. Nothing was inspiring me. As much as I love summer the thought of having another tomato salad made me kind of sick and I wasn’t ready to turn it over to butternut squash.
I circled the produce section waiting for a sign. And then I saw these beauties.
Truth be told, I have never seen “real” New Mexico Hatch Chiles before. I had heard about them and read about them but never saw them in Chicago.
*Ding, ding, ding!* We have a winner.
I knew I wanted to make green chile turkey burgers. I opted for turkey burgers because I am trying to keep it slim these days but really the burger is just a vehicle to get the green chiles into my mouth.
Let’s talk green chile sauce. I am not an expert by any means on New Mexico Green Chile sauce so I kept it really simple because I wanted to taste the chile itself.
First I roasted the chiles on the stovetop and got them nice and charred.
Next, I put them in a bowl to steam and then peeled them. I decided to take out all of the seeds because I did not want them to bitter the sauce.
Once they were peeled they went into a blender with grilled onions, cilantro, lime juice and agave. Really that’s it. No garlic, no cumin, no oil. I did add salt and pepper though.
I thought the Hatch Chiles would be fairly mild and sweet, similar to a poblano. I don’t know if it was the batch of chiles I bought but these were spicy. Not overwhelming spicy but hot nonetheless! First the sweetness hits your palate and then the warmth of the chiles takes over. It was addicting!
Now on to the burgers. I bought lean ground turkey breast, which I enjoy but tends to produce very dry burgers. To combat the “hockey puck” texture of the burgers I added grated zucchini and onions. Zucchini is packed with moisture so it will help the turkey breast remain juicy.
I didn’t add any special seasoning in my patty, just salt and pepper.
I decided to go with a simple, mild melting cheese on my burger. The ole Monterey Jack. Garnished with arugula and set it on a whole-wheat bun.
It was a perfect combination. The mild, moist turkey burger with the gooey melted cheese covered in spicy, smoky and slightly sweet Green Chile sauce. It was oh-so-good. I mean really good!
I always recommend that if you don’t know what to cook just go into the store and walk around and you will (eventually) find some inspiration. The day after I made this burger I went back to Whole Foods and bought twice as many Green Hatch Chiles as the day before and made a double batch of sauce. This is good stuff and I’m sure you’ll see it again in the very near future.
- 8-10 New Mexico Hatch Chiles
- 1 small onion, sliced into thick rounds and grilled
- 1 cup of cilantro + 2 tbsp chopped
- 1 lime, juiced
- 1 tbsp agave nectar (light)
- 1 lb ground turkey breast
- 1 medium zucchini, grated
- 3 tbsp grated onion
- 4 oz Monterey Jack cheese, grated
- 3 cups baby arugula
- 4 whole wheat buns
- Roast the green chiles until charred.
- Place them in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Allow them to steam for 15 minutes.
- Once they are cool enough to handle, peel the black skin off of the peppers. Remove the seeds.
- Place them in a blender with grilled onions, 1 cup of cilantro, lime juice and agave.
- Blend until smooth. (Add ¼ cup of water if the mixture is too thick and will not blend).
- Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.
- Mix the grated zucchini, onion, 2 tbsp of cilantro and ground turkey breast together.
- Season with salt and pepper.
- Cook off 1 tbsp of turkey mixture to check for seasonings and adjust if necessary.
- Form the turkey mixture into 4 patties. Chill the patties for 10 minutes to help set.
- Cook the turkey burgers on a grill pan or on the grill over medium-high heat until cooked through. About 4 minutes on each side.
- Cover with Monterey Jack cheese and allow to melt. Place 1 tbsp of green chile sauce on the bottom of the bun. Top with arugula and then set the turkey burger on top. Top the burger with an additional 1 tbsp of green chile sauce and then top with bun.