Ancient Athena Bellerophon Turkey Sliders with Pegasus Red Pepper Pesto and Fresh Feta Spinach Salad

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Bright and full-bodied, this Zinfandel wine is a curious contradiction in tastes.

These Greek inspired sliders are full of flavor and they tell a famous mythology story of Bellerophon and Pegasus.Bellerophon was a hero of Greek mythology. He was the greatest hero and slayer of monsters before the days of Heracles. Athena, the goddess of wisdom, brought Pegasus to Bellerophon. Pegasus was the famous horse Bellerophon rode upon while defeating the enemies. These Greek inspired sliders celebrate the collaboration of the American turkey burger and the bold and flamboyant Olympian Greek flavors. Fresh ground turkey combined with feta cheese, oregano, parsley, greek seasoning, red onion, and fresh garlic-a combination that will take you to a Olympian Greek Feast! The roasted red pepper pesto and fresh feta spinach salad give an appealing layer of texture and taste. Building these Ancient Greek Sliders has never looked and tasted so good!


Pegasus Red Pepper Pesto:

1/2 cup pine nuts

1 cup packed roasted red bell pepper strips, drained and patted dry

1 cup freshly shredded Romano cheese

2 tablespoons fresh sweet basil leaves

2 cloves of garlic, minced

2 tablespoons fresh crumbled feta cheese

3 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped

1 tablespoon fresh oregano leaves

2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2/3 cup Colavita Extra Virgin Olive Oil


2 pounds fresh ground turkey

1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese

1/4 cup finely chopped red onion

1/3 cup fresh finely chopped parsley

1 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

1/2 teaspoon greek seasoning, prefer McCormick

3 cloves of garlic,minced

Fresh Feta Spinach Salad:

2 tablespoons Colavita Extra Virgin Olive Oil

2 tablespoons Colavita Balsamic Vinegar

1 teaspoon fresh oregano, finely chopped

1/2 teaspoon fresh sweet basil leaves, chopped

1 teaspoon fresh minced garlic

1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

3 cups fresh baby spinach leaves

1/3 cup finely chopped red onion

1 1/3 cup crumbled feta cheese

2/3 cup Roma tomatoes, diced

2/3 cup English cucumber, peeled and diced

Other ingredients:

2 tablespoons vegetable oil, for brushing on grill

12 slices (1/4 inch thick) fresh mozzarella cheese

12 Kings Hawaiian Honey Wheat Dinner Rolls


Preheat a gas grill to medium heat. To make pesto, toast the pine nuts by placing them in a small fireproof skillet and stirring until lightly toasted, about 4-5 minutes. Remove from heat and place nuts on a small plate to cool; set aside. Combine the toasted pine nuts, red bell pepper strips, Romano cheese, sweet basil leaves, garlic, crumbled feta cheese, parsley, fresh oregano, lemon juice, kosher salt, and black pepper in a food processor and process until finely chopped, about 30 seconds. Slowly add the 2/3 cup extra virgin olive oil and process until completely combined. Scrape pesto into a small bowl and cover with plastic wrap; set aside.

To make patties, combine all of the ingredients in a large bowl. Handling the meat as little as possible to avoid compacting it, mix well. Divide the mixture into 12 equal portions and, using your hands, shape into patties about 3 1/2-inches wide. Cover and refrigerate until ready to grill.

To make the salad, in a medium bowl add the extra virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar, oregano, sweet basil, garlic, lemon juice, Dijon mustard, red pepper flakes, kosher salt, and fresh black pepper; whisk to combine. Add the fresh spinach leaves, red onion, feta cheese, Roma tomatoes, cucumber and toss to coat; set aside.

Heat a gas grill to medium-high. When the grill is ready, brush the grill rack with the vegetable oil. Place the patties on the rack, cover, and cook, turning once, until turkey is fully cooked, about 4-6 minutes on each side. During the last few minutes of grilling, top each patty with a slice of mozzarella cheese until melted and place the buns, cut side down, on the outer edges of the rack to toast lightly.

To assemble the sliders, spread the cut sides of the buns with equal portions of the pesto. On each bun bottom, top with equal amounts of spinach salad, a turkey patty, and evenly divide the remaining spinach salad on top of patties. Add the bun tops and serve. Makes 12 sliders to serve 6, prep time: 1 1/2 hours, grilling time: 10 minutes