Also pleasing is that I get to try out sambal ulek - I've heard of this, but never cooked with it. It's an Indonesian chilli paste. The brand I bought wasn't as spicy as I expected and would have liked, but was still very nice.
2 large beetroot
300 ml light crème fraîche
1 tbsp horseradish paste/sauce
salt and pepper
500 g chicken breast
2 large eggs
4 tsp sambal oelek
2 tsp lime juice
2 tbsp cornflour
salt and pepper
oil for frying
- Peel the beetroot and then grate it coarsely and place in a large bowl.
- Stir in the crème fraîche, the horseradish, salt and pepper.
- Next, trim the chicken breasts and chop finely - or whizz in a food processor, then place in a large bowl.
- Peel and finely dice the shallots and add to the chicken.
- Stir in the eggs, sambal oelek, lime juice cornflour, salt and pepper and mix to get well combined. It will not be possible to form into burgers, that's OK.
- Heat up some oil in a frying pan, then using a scoop spoon 2 - 3 patties into the frying pan and press down into burger shapes, making sure they don't touch.
- Fry for a few minutes, then flip over and fry for a few more minutes and the burgers are done.
- Repeat with the rest of the mixture. Serve with the beetroot tzatziki and steamed or sautéed potatoes.
The beetroot tzatziki is a bit misleading I think - tzatziki has fairly fixed ingredients, none of them being beetroot. But the mixture was very nice. The key thing is to wear protective clothing when peeling and grating the beetroot and it should be preferably red in colouring or you'll be sorry. The book recommends stir-frying the beetroot first and letting it cool down before making the mixture, if you want to tone down the beetroot flavour. To be honest, I think it was nice raw and I keep thinking we should try to eat more beetroot, but it is a bit of a hassle to prepare it as it can stain and also as it would discolour our food. My Sister Bip usually makes juice and she's promised to make some for us next time we go to Sweden.
As for carbs, I'd bought some lovely baby potatoes, which I first steamed and then fried in the left-over oil from the chicken burgers. If you do that, I strongly recommend that you warm up the oven to about 80 °C and keep the burgers warm. But of course burger buns would work just as well, maybe add some sliced tomato, red onion and a couple of salad leaves.
Finely chopping the chicken took a lot of effort, as the processor attachment on my handheld blender broke the other week and so I don't recommend doing this on a week-day. But it's well worth trying to dice finely, rather than mince as the burger texture was very good. I was also pleased that I didn't need to get my hands dirty forming patties and I'll try that when I make Bulgarian meatballs in the future. I used my ice cream scoop to plop 3 scoops into the frying pan and then gently pressed them down, leaving about a cm between them. But next time I'll add a spicier chilli paste.
Lundulph's verdict - nice texture, meatier than normal burgers, tasted nice and the beetroot and potatoes worked well with them.