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Recipe Sat Jul 21 2007

Chicken-Tofu Burger w/ Light Teriyaki Sauce

Not that I'm a health nut, but I like to make Japanese-style burgers with ground chicken and tofu. Light, fluffy and aromatic, this bastard child of the manly American staple can be surprisingly satisfying. Using crushed tofu in hamburgers became popular in my home country probably a decade or so ago. Although it was initially intended as a healthier option for beef-based burgers, the method quickly became something of a national favorite thanks to its lighter texture and its versatility. Perhaps not surprisingly, this tofu-based burger sits quite well with traditional Japanese meals. I'd recommend serving it with a bowl of rice, rather than between hamburger buns. And you know what? With this tasty yet healthier version of a burger, you can have a few more of those wedge fries without a tinge of guilt!

Chicken-Tofu Burger

Chicken-Tofu Burger with Light Teriyaki Sauce (for three or four)

  • 1/2 pound ground chicken
  • 1/3 pound firm tofu
  • 1 teaspoon minced ginger
  • 1 tablespoon corn starch
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon minced wakame (seaweed; optional)
  • salt and pepper to taste

For the sauce

  • 1-1/2 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1-1/2 tablespoon mirin or 1 tablespoon sugar

Method


  1. Put the ground chicken in a bowl.
  2. Crush the firm tofu and squeeze out the water as much as you can.
  3. Add the tofu, egg, ginger, wakame and corn starch to the bowl of ground chicken, and mix well until the mixture is smooth and consistent. (I usually use my hand, but if you're yucked out by the idea, you can use a utensil.)
  4. Lightly season with salt and pepper.
  5. Heat some butter in a frying pan.
  6. Divide the burger into four equal parts, and form them into ovals.
  7. Sautée the burgers until brown, on both sides.
  8. At the end of the cook time, mix the soy sauce and mirin in a small bowl and pour it over the burgers in the pan. Let the sauce simmer for a minute, and serve.

If you're thinking of this burger as a healthy meal option, my suggestion is to ask your butcher to ground the chicken part of your choice after you picked it. Too often, pre-ground chicken consists of unwanted, fatty parts of the chicken, making the seemingly healthy meat surprisingly high in fat content. The same mixture, with a dash of sesame oil and a teaspoon of minced garlic added, can be used for steamed dumplings as well. Bon Appetite!

 
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Feature Thu Dec 31 2015

The State of Food Writing

By Brandy Gonsoulin

In 2009, food blogging, social media and Yelp were gaining popularity, and America's revered gastronomic magazine Gourmet shuttered after 68 years in business. Former Cook's Illustrated editor-in-chief Chris Kimball followed with an editorial, stating that "The shuttering of Gourmet reminds...
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Drive-Thru is the food and drink section of Gapers Block, covering the city's vibrant dining, drinking and cooking scene. More...
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Editor: Robyn Nisi, rn@gapersblock.com
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