Gingered Pear Turkey Burger
6 Kaiser rolls, split
One medium onion
10 slices crystallized ginger
5 Tablespoons butter
6 leaves of Bibb lettuce
3/4 pound Smoked Swiss or Smoked Gouda cheese
Two large Bartlett pears–ripe, but still firm (not mushy)
1 egg, slightly beaten
1/4 cup dried bread crumbs
2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp. freshly ground sea salt
one package (1.3 lb) 85/15 ground turkey
Freshly ground black pepper
Vegetable oil for brushing the grill to avoid sticking (3 Tablespoons or so)
Prepare a charcoal grill until coals are medium-hot, or preheat gas grill to medium high.
Thinly slice the onion into rings–place onto a large piece of aluminum foil. Cut the crystallized ginger into matchstick size strips and arrange atop the onion slices. Dot the top with 5 Tbs. of butter and fold the foil over the top to create a packet. Place packet on grill for 7-10 minutes or until onion is translucent and the butter is melted but not too browned. Remove and use a pastry brush to apply the flavored melted butter onto both the cut surfaces of all the Kaiser rolls. Re-wrap the packet to keep warm.
Rinse the lettuce leaves and pat dry. Cut the Smoked Swiss (or Smoked Gouda) cheese into 1/4 inch slices (enough to cover all six patties completely).
Rinse and dry the pears. Slice them lengthwise into 1/4 inch slices. Keep the largest six slices (removing core with seeds, but leaving skin on) to place atop the patties.
With the remaining pear slices, remove the core and skin and coarsely chop the pear; this should yield about 3/4 cup of chopped pear. Combine the pear with the beaten egg, bread crumbs, ginger and salt. Handling gently to avoid packing it too firmly, blend the egg/pear mixture with the ground turkey. Form into 6 patties and grind pepper on top of each patty.
Brush grill with vegetable oil. place patties on grill, cover and grill for about 3-4 minutes. After turning over the patties, place first a slice of pear and then enough of the sliced cheese to cover each patty. Cover and grill for about 2-3 minutes–open and place buns cut side down to toast them slightly. Grill covered another 2 minutes or so, until the cheese is just starting to melt and drip down the sides a little.
To build this masterpiece:
place some of the grilled onion/crystallized ginger mix on the bottom bun, place the pear and cheese covered patty atop this, top with the Bibb lettuce and cover with the toasted top of the Kaiser roll and ENJOY!