I wanted to inject a little summer punch in my weekly client menu planning. Shrimp burgers were the first to come to mind, as the last time I ate one was on Fire Island, sitting by the bay, glass of white wine in hand and savoring each bite. I wanted to give my client that experience on a weeknight when he is tired and landlocked. Not an easy feat, but doable.
With no recipe for these burgers, I had to go with the next best thing–my intuition and my taste buds. What I delivered was right on point and crazytown good!
- 2 scallions roughly chopped, separate and slice dark green tops and reserve
- 2 medium cloves garlic, smashed
- Zest of one lime
- 1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
- 1 pound of shrimp, peeled and deveined, divide in half
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1/4 cup cilantro, roughly chopped, more if desired
- 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper and/or 1 teaspoon Sriracha (optional or to taste)
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 2 teaspoons sesame oil
- 1 teaspoon sesame seeds
- Vegetable oil for cooking
Fixings: Brioche buns, butter leaf lettuce, sliced mango, red onion, cucumber, avocado, wedges of lime, Sriracha, mayo
Start by making the aromatic puree in a food processor with scallion bottoms, garlic, zest and ginger; process until smooth. Rough chop half of the shrimp and add to food processor. Blend until paste-like mixture forms. This mixture helps to bind the burgers therefore no need for mayo, eggs or breadcrumbs.
Remove paste to a mixing bowl. Add dark green scallion tops, turmeric, coriander, cilantro, red pepper/Sriracha, black pepper, salt and sesame oil; mix well.
Hand chop remaining shrimp to roughly 1/4 inch-sized pieces. Add to mixing bowl and combine all ingredients well.
SCHOP! Tip: When working with minced meats (e.g., meatballs, meatloaf), cook a small piece to check your seasonings and flavors. You don’t want to cook 20 meatballs only to find you forgot to add salt.
Heat a nonstick pan coated with vegetable oil over medium heat. Once hot, press in 1 tablespoon of burger mixture. Cook one minute each side. Let cool and taste. What does it need for you? Add it in, combine well and test again.
Once to your liking, form generous patties, about four, sprinkle both sides with sesame seeds. At this point you can let them set up in the fridge while you prepare your fixings or you can wrap individually and freeze in a dated and labeled freezer bag.
Cook burgers in the same vein as your test piece. Two and a half minutes per side, more if needed. Serve immediately with your smorgasbord of fixings.
While this was delicious, I must improve upon it, perhaps by adding a small knob of lemongrass to the aromatic puree or taking it in a whole other direction and flavor profile. Stay tuned!
Enjoy, get eating and thanks for reading!
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Kysha Harris is owner of SCHOP! which is available for weekly service or for home entertaining. Questions? Comments? Requests? Feedback? Email kysha@iSCHOP.com