Every week in Genius Recipes—often with your help!—Food52 Creative Director and lifelong Genius-hunter Kristen Miglore is unearthing recipes that will change the way you cook.
Who among us hasn’t been burned by a dry turkey burger before? (Or chicken, or pork, or even beef, that time whoever was in charge of shopping went down a dark path and bought the 98% lean mix.) I had an especially dismal one just recently at the burger joint across the street from my apartment. Fool me, I don’t know, a hundred times?
But I never gave up hope. And I finally found a sure thing for juicy, unreasonably good lean-meated burgers in Niloufer Ichaporia King’s 2007 James Beard Award–winning cookbook My Bombay Kitchen, a memoir and archive of the recipes and techniques from her heritage in the Parsi community in India.
There is a greater proportion of vegetable matter here than I’d ever have thought wise to mix into a burger, for fear of lingering chunks of raw ginger, onion, and chile. But every last bit has just enough time to soften and release its bright, herby, spicy vapors and juices into the burgers as they sizzle, fixing both of the problems meat lacking in fat tends to have: severe deficits in flavor and moisture.
In related perks, this means that you don’t have to stress as much about seasoning the meat mix just right, or stopping the second the burger reaches doneness. You have more than enough buffer.
For the rest of dinner, King recommends a simple baked potato and a salad with avocado. Alice Medrich, longtime Food52 columnist and another genius in our midst, who sent me this recipe, likes to involve raita or King’s spicy carrot salad, also from My Bombay Kitchen. Or you could of course put it on a bun, and it will erase the memory of every sad turkey burger you’ve met.
The Genius Desserts cookbook is here! With more than 100 of the most beloved and talked-about desserts of our time (and the hidden gems soon to join their ranks) this book will make you a local legend, and a smarter baker to boot.
I'm an ex-economist, ex-Californian who moved to New York to work in food media in 2007. Dodgy career choices aside, I can't help but apply the rational tendencies of my former life to things like: recipe tweaking, digging up obscure facts about pizza, and deciding how many pastries to put in my purse for "later."