Pilgrim Turkey Burgers with Cranberry Mayo, Brussels Sprout Slaw and a Sweet Potato Schmear

Pairs well with:

Pinot Grigio

You won’t need a bouquet of flowers when you share our Pinot Grigio. This crisp wine with floral aromas is a wonderful way to make an entrance.

Thanksgiving has always been our favorite family dinner.So my goal was to incorporate the great flavors reminiscent of Thanksgiving into a grilled summertime burger.


1 c. packaged dry herb-flavored stuffing mix (such as Pepperidge Farm)
2/3 c. whole milk
1 lb fresh ground dark meat turkey (good quality from a butcher or Whole Foods)
1 lb fresh ground white meat turkey (good quality from a butcher or Whole Foods)
1 egg, lightly beaten
2 T. finely chopped fresh sage
2 T. finely chopped fresh flat leaf parsley
½ c. coarsely chopped dried cranberries
1 t. each sea salt and fresh ground pepper
1 T. canola oil set aside for grilling

Cranberry Mayo
½ c. good quality mayo
3 T. canned whole cranberry sauce
1 T. chopped dried cranberries
2 t. balsamic vinegar
1 t. Dijon mustard
¼ t. cayenne
¼ t. fresh ground nutmeg
½ t. each sea salt and fresh ground pepper

Brussels Sprout Slaw
1 c. Sutter Home Pinot Grigio
3 T. brown sugar
3 T. white wine vinegar
1 t. sea salt
8 large whole fresh Brussels sprouts
3 T. coarsely chopped shallot
1 small Granny Smith apple, peeled and coarsely chopped
1 t. fresh ground pepper

Sweet Potato Schmear
1 medium (about 8 oz) sweet potato
½ t. sea salt
1 T. canola oil
1 T. pure maple syrup
½ t. fresh ground nutmeg
½ t. cinnamon
1 t. fresh ground pepper
2 T. whipped style cream cheese

1 T. melted butter
6 good quality bakery style hamburger buns, split


Prep the Patties: Prepare a panade by mixing herb stuffing and milk in a small bowl with a fork to moisten and then set aside for 10-15 minutes to allow stuffing to absorb milk. Mash mixture lightly with a fork to make a coarse paste. In a large bowl, add all the remaining patty ingredients and the panade. Mix all gently with hands until fully blended. Divide mixture into six equal pieces and form into bun size patties. Place on platter, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until grilling time.

For the Mayo: Whisk all ingredients together in a small bowl until well blended. Cover and refrigerate until ready to assemble the burgers.

For the Slaw: Remove tough outer leaves of sprouts and discard and then cut off leafy tops and discard the stems. Thinly slice the sprout tops in a chiffonade to measure 1 cup and place in a small bowl. Add shallots and apple to the sliced sprouts and toss with a fork to blend and set aside. Place wine in a small fireproof saucepan and place on high heat on a gas grill and bring to a boil and continue boiling until reduced to ½ c. liquid—about 10 minutes. Remove from heat, stir in brown sugar, vinegar and salt then return saucepan to grill and bring to boil over high heat and continue boiling for 1 minute. Remove saucepan from grill and pour mixture over Brussels sprouts mixture in the bowl. Sprinkle with pepper and toss with a fork to blend. Set aside.

For the Schmear: Peel sweet potato and slice lengthwise into 4-6 slices about 1/2″ thick. Place in a single layer on a fireproof shallow cookie sheet; rub both sides of slices with oil and sprinkle with salt. Place pan on medium heat on grill and cook with lid closed about 5-10 minutes or until bottoms are slightly browned (avoid a char). Turn slices over and continue grilling another 5-10 minutes until slices are tender when pierced with a fork. Remove from heat and place slices in a shallow bowl and mash with the back of a fork until just evenly smooth. Stir in syrup, nutmeg, cinnamon and pepper until blended. Add cream cheese to the mixture and stir slightly with a fork to distribute the cream cheese but do not blend. There should be visible streaks of cream cheese in the potato mixture. Set aside.

For the Buns: While potatoes are grilling, lightly brush insides of buns with melted butter. Place buttered side down on the grill over medium heat and toast until lightly browned. Remove and lay buns open on a large platter.

Grill: Remove burgers from refrigerator. Set grill to high heat and preheat for 10 minutes. Dip several folded paper towels in the 1 T. oil and with grilling tongs generously rub the preheated heated grates. Place burgers on grill and close lid. Leave heat on high for 2 minutes then turn down to medium high. Continue cooking burgers about 4 more minutes, lid down, until grilled and browned. Flip burgers over and continue cooking about 5 more minutes or until a meat thermometer inserted in the sides of the burger registers 165-170 degrees. Remove to plate and tent with foil and allow to rest 5 minutes.

Assemble: Divide prepared sweet potato mixture evenly over the six bun bottoms and spread to cover. Then spread about 1 T. of cranberry mayo over the open top half of buns. Drain liquid from Brussels sprout slaw. To assemble burgers, place one patty on the sweet potato schmear, top with 1-2 T. slaw and add top bun spread with cranberry mayo. Serves 6.