Does it live up to the hype? The recipe looked really good to me, but then I opened my jar of Major Grey's chutney (which is a type of chutney, not a brand, I learned) and I wasn't so sure. I am a fan of chutney, but this did not taste good straight out of the jar, and it was extremely salty. The brand was Crosse and Blackwell. It was my first experience with Major Grey's chutney, so maybe another brand would be better. I don't know.
Then, as I started to make the recipe, again I was uneasy. It is a huge recipe which should serve 8 so I decided to 1/3 the recipe, which pretty much amounted to guessing the amounts of the ingredients. It seems that Oprah's people pay less heed to the website than the show. There were mistakes all over the place. (It says it serves 6, but then instructs you to shape 8 half-pound patties. It calls for cinnamon in the instructions for the topping, but not on the ingredient list. ) Also, the amount of salt and pepper it called for sounded crazy. All of this left me wondering if the recipe would turn out anything like the burger Oprah holds so dear.
So I went through with the recipe anyway, even adding almost all of the salt it called for, and they were delicious. I am craving more. My husband (who is very manly when it comes to food- he loves his beef) actually declared them better than regular burgers. The burgers looked great because they keep their shape better than beef (no fat to shrink them!) and they had perfectly seared black lines from the grill. Though turkey has a tendency to be dry, these stayed quite moist, probably from the apples.
Some notes if you are going to make these burgers:
- 1/3 of the recipe made 5 average-sized burgers
- I used a grater for the apples because I thought bigger chunks might lead to burgers falling apart on the grill. It worked perfectly!
- They were quite salty, which was a nice contrast with the sweet topping, but I will probably scale back on the salt next time (I scaled back a pinch or so this time around)
- we topped ours with the chutney topping, mayo, and a little bit of the Tabasco chipotle pepper sauce. I think they would also be good with lettuce, tomato, cheese, or whatever you like on your beef burgers.
- They can be formed a day ahead of time to be grilled later
- I roasted my pears with a sprinkle of cinnamon on top, as I did not know the amount to use, and it worked fine
- I did not follow the recipe here. Since my chutney was already so salty and because I didn't like it that much anyway, I just used 1 whole roasted pear and mixed it with a few spoonfuls of chutney and a handful of raisins. We liked it that way!