Apple Turkey Burgers with Rosemary Acorn Squash

I love discovering new food blogs, and despite the countless ones floating around the web, I thought I had explored all the popular ones and grouped them comfortably in my google reader to enjoy. I guess I missed one, and an important one that is. During a lovely September week, many different food bloggers posted recipes from The Sprouted Kitchen's cookbook: The Sprouted Kitchen: a tastier take on whole foods. You don't have to guess that I quickly clicked over to explore the blog that holds the key to a whole new world of healthy cooking.

Well, if you're still here and didn't click over there, then you should know that Sara's recipes are truly compelling. I just had to take a peek into her cookbook. Suffice to say it was on my doorstep a short while later.

It didn't disappoint.

The book comprises of a collection of recipes that are unique without needing frivolous ingredients. Many of the dishes are vegetarian, filled with fresh herbs and vibrant produce. Sara does a beautiful job dressing up ingredients in layers of flavors that are subtle yet remarkable. It's an interesting combination.

And the photographs. They are positively stunning in their simplicity and elegance. The colors are rich, the shadows deep, and the light breathtaking. Photos are the integral partner that bring the dishes alive.

What I love most about The Sprouted Kitchen is Sara's relaxed approach to healthy eating. She doesn't seek to advocate a specific diet, nor require hard-to-find ingredients. She leads you through the steps, with a laidback voice that gives you confidence and joy in the meal you are preparing. She simply has a passion for real, unprocessed, homemade food. I love that, because that's how I feel about food as well.

I must say I couldn't pick a recipe to try first. There were the lentil meatballs with lemon pesto and the peanut butter pretzel tartlets that made my heart skip a beat. I did run to try the creamy egg omelet first, that completely revolutionized my mornings, with the addition of just one tablespoon of milk to eggs (so simple, yet so significant), I got a creamy, delicate omelet with a hint of flavor that makes all the difference.

But I also wanted to tell you about the roasted acorn squash with hazelnuts and balsamic reduction, and the roasted tomato soup, and how about the plum tartines. There are just so many things to share.

For those wondering about the kosher status of the book, well it isn't officially kosher, but it isn't terribly unkosher. There are no more than 5 out of the 100 recipes that are impossible to adapt in the kosher kitchen. I consider this book to be a great source of inspiration for healthy, family meals and snacks. (Did I not tell you about the crunchy curried chickpeas?)

So I finally settled on the Chipotle and Apple Turkey Burgers. I was having company over, and felt that this was the perfect dish to grill up for a hearty meal.

The burgers were juicy, with the apple, celery and onions giving them a nice texture. I topped it with a dollop of herb aioli, which I made in a flash with store-bought mayonnaise. Finally, I wedged it between a Kaiser roll and paired it with roasted rosemary acorn squash, which I loosely adapted from another recipe in the book. A perfect meal shared with family and friends. I will admit that I even had to hide the last remaining burgers so I could keep them to photograph the next morning. That makes me happy. A delicious meal it was.

I'm really looking forward to cooking from this book, and exploring new flavors, both sweet and savory. (This morning I made the Pumpkin Granola, if you must know. I'll share it with you in a bit.)

(Also, I peaked into a few more cookbooks that I'll tell you about soon enough.)

Turkey Burgers

1 tablespoon of olive oil

1 celery stalk, finely chopped

3 green onions, finely chopped

4 cloves garlic, finely chopped

1 Granny Smith apple

1 pound ground turkey

1 scant teaspoon of chipotle chili (I used regular chili powder)

1/2 teaspoon of sea salt

1/2 teaspoon of ground pepper

2 tablespoon of fresh chives

Herb Aioli

(my quick version)

2 tablespoons of mayonnaise

1 tablespoon of dijon mustard

2 tablespoons of chives

2 tablespoons of basil leaves

To Serve

4-5 hamburger or kaiser rolls

butter lettuce

tomato slices

caramelized onions

Roasted Acorn Squash

1 acorn squash, sliced into wedges

1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil

1 teaspoon of dried rosemary

3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced

salt and pepper


To make the aioli, mix all the ingredients and set aside.

To make the burgers, heat the olive oil in a saute pan. Cook the celery, green onions, and garlic until just browned. Turn off heat and set aside to cool.

Using the large holes of a box grater, grate the apple. Combine the apple, turkey, chili, salt, pepper, chives, and cooked mixture in a mixing bowl and stir everything together. Form into 4 or 8 patties (depending on the size you want), and let them rest at room temperature for about 15 minutes.

Heat a grill or a skillet on medium-high. Cook the burgers until the interior reaches 175F on an instant read thermometer, about 5-7 minutes on each side. Transfer to a plate and cover loosely with foil.

Grill or toast the buns. Spread each side with a bit aioli. Add the toppings and serve.

For the squash, preheat your oven to 400F. Toss the acorn squash with the oil, garlic, rosemary, salt and pepper. Spread on a rimmed baking sheet and bake for 25 minutes, until nicely browned.

Note: I divided the mixture into smaller patties, so they would fit into little hands. The original recipe divides into four patties.