November 23, 2010

Cacciatore Burgers

I've heard of Cacciatore but have never had it. To tell you the truth I don't even know what goes into it. My saving grace, YAHOO!, and a quick search and I was on the path to knowledge. I found out that Cacciatore implies that something is cooked with tomatoes, onions, mushrooms, herbs, and sometimes wine. The etymology is Italian, from cacciare, meaning to hunt.

In Rachael Ray's 365: No Repeats A Year of Deliciously Different Dinners cookbook she offered up a recipe for Cacciatore Burgers. After a quick scan of the ingredients list and deeming this a "might-like" for Mr. Sideline Chef I added this to our menu lineup.

Her burgers don't include tomato or wine. She missed the mark on this one being Cacciatore-esque. Although I did have to "hunt" for the ingredients since I went shopping at Krogers since I needed fresh fish this week and I am not a regular there. I had to back track quite a few times trying to find all of the items on my shopping list.

Getting to eat a burger, even a turkey burger, makes me giddy. I love the indulgence of a burger. Sinking my teeth into a meaty patty and the flavors from all of the toppings and the grease that may or may not drip down to my elbows. This Turkey Cacciatore Burger is unlike anything I have ever had. The aroma that filled the house is reminiscent of a Philly cheesesteak. My mouth was watering and stomach growling the entire preparation. The final product looked like heaven between a bun.

On top of a broiled bun brushed with butter and garlic laid the turkey burger that had Worcestershire sauce, garlic, red pepper flakes, onions, parsley, basil, Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper. The burger was topped with sauteed sliced portobello mushrooms, onions, cubanelle peppers, and hot cherry peppers then topped with the broiled bun top.

A spring salad mix with an olive oil-lemon dressing was served as a side dish with roasted garlic bagel chips as well. The burger was the only star. "Pretty good." This coming from Mr. Sideline Chef is saying something. He had seconds and thought it could have even had more of a kick. He told me, "It was even heat to tease me." Finally! Another recipe that can be inserted in the "Mr. Sideline Chef's Favorites". This is a must try burger!

Cacciatore Burgers
Rachael Ray 365: No Repeats A Year of Deliciously Different Dinners
Makes 4 servings

Stars of the Show:
  • extra virgin olive oil, for liberal drizzling, plus 4 tbsp
  • 1 lb ground turkey breast or ground chicken - I used ground turkey.
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 4 garlic cloves (2 cloves chopped, 2 cracked from skins and reserved)
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 medium yellow onion (1/4 of the onion finely chopped and the other 3/4 of the onion thinly sliced)
  • handful of fresh flat-leaf parsley - I used dried parsley since that is what I have on hand.
  • 10 fresh basil leaves, shredded - Once again I used dried basil.
  • generous handful of grated Parmesan cheese
  • salt and ground black pepper
  • 2 portobello mushroom caps, thinly sliced - I scraped out the gills. They gross me out.
  • 2 cubanelle pepper, seeded and sliced - I used Anaheim peppers.
  • 2 hot red cherry peppers, chopped, plus a splash of their juice
  • 4 slices Provolone cheese
  • 4 crusty rolls, split
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 12 oz mixed baby greens
  • 2 tbsp fresh thyme leaves, chopped - I used dried thyme.
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 sack of fancy chips such as olive oil and rosemary flavor or Terra's garlic and onion Yukon golds - I used New York Style Roasted Garlic Bagel Chips.
And Action:

Preheat a large nonstick skillet or grill pan to medium high heat.

Drizzle some olive oil in a bowl and add the ground turkey or chicken, Worcestershire, chopped garlic, red pepper flakes, chopped onions, parsley, basil, Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper. Combine to form 4 large patties and add to the hot skillet. (I had to turn my heat down to medium because it was starting to burn the burgers.) Cook for 6 minutes, then flip the burgers. Cook for 5 minutes on the other side.

Heat a second skillet over medium-high heat. Add 2 tbsp olive oil. Add the mushroom caps with the sliced onions and cubanelle peppers. Season with salt and pepper and cook for 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Turn the heat off. Add the hot cherry peppers and a splash of their juice.

Place the Provolone over the burgers and turn off the heat in the pan. Tent the pan with foil to melt the cheese.

Preheat the broiler to high. Toast the crusty rolls until golden. (This happened within a minute and I actually burnt some of the edges.) Melt the butter with the remaining cracked garlic in the microwave. Brush the garlic butter on the rolls.

Place the turkey or chicken burgers on the buns. Top with the peppers and onions and replace the top halves of the buns.

Toss the spring salad greens with the thyme, lemon juice, 2 tbsp of olive oil, salt and pepper. Serve the greens alongside the Cacciatore Burgers with the chips of your choice.


Anonymous said...

That looks so good. I am not one who eats burgers per say, but that looks yummmmmy!

Pretend Chef said...

Jenn - It was even better than it looks. I think it was one of the best tasting turkey burgers I have ever had. Can't wait for leftovers tomorrow for lunch!

ping said...

That looks scrumplicious!

Peggy said...

Definitely a great idea for a burger! This looks pretty awesome!

Carolyn said...

Ooo, this sounds so good. I think everyone in my family would like it. Definitely one for the "to make" pile!

Pretend Chef said...

Peggy - I was a bit skeptical at first but the aroma and first bite put that to rest. Looking forward to lunchtime today!

Carolyn - If you end up making this you'll have to tell me how you like it!

Ping - Dinner reservations can be made by contacting me at... haha!

Anonymous said...

I love Rachel Ray recipes. She always comes up with things like these burgers that are creative and fantastic! These look awesome! Wishing you a great Thanksgiving :)

Pretend Chef said...

Baking.Serendipity - Her recipes are hit or miss with my household. This was a hit though! Hope you have a great Thanksgiving as well!

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