Spicy Venison Burgers
You may not know that our “set” for The Food Factor is a real kitchen in the home of one of our team members. Her husband loves to hunt and share food, so while we are working on the show we often get to sample a variety of venison dishes.
We found this flavorful recipe for Spicy Venison Burgers in a venison recipe booklet from Cornell University Cooperative Extension and thought it would be perfect for The Food Factor!
The Italian sausages add a little bit of fat to help hold the patties together. Next time I’d experiment with adding an egg to the mixture as these were still pretty crumbly. You can vary the amount of spices you add, choose spicy sausages, or choose from a range of peppers to include. Ghost peppers anyone? If you’re in a hurry or don’t like a lot of heat in your peppers, I recommend the small cans of mild diced green chile you can buy in the grocery store. You can mix them in or add them on top as the burgers finish cooking.
Of course, if you don’t have venison, you can substitute your favorite ground meat in place of the venison. I think it would taste great with beef!
Spicy Venison Burgers
1 pound ground venison
2 Italian sausages
1 small onion
½ cup mushrooms
1 teaspoon black pepper
½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
½ teaspoon cumin
½ teaspoon dried thyme
For extra heat, 1-2 Tablespoons diced jalapeño or poblano pepper (about 1 whole jalapeño or 1/3 of a whole poblano)
1. Peel and dice half of the onion into ¼-inch pieces. Wipe the mushrooms with a damp paper towel, then dice into ¼-inch pieces. If using jalapeño or poblano, rinse the pepper and dice to ¼-inch pieces. (For less heat, remove the seeds and sauté the peppers in oil before adding into the meat. For more heat, add the seeds and uncooked peppers).
2. Remove sausage from casing if necessary. Mix ground venison, sausage, onion, mushrooms, peppers if using, and spices by hand. Divide into 6 even portions, about 3 ounces each. Shape the patties into thick rounds with a slight impression in the middle of each.
3. Grill patties on preheated flat-top griddle or clamshell-style electric grill. The patties will be very lean so it is best not to cook them on a grated grill as they may fall apart. Cook until a thermometer inserted into the center of a patty reads at least 160°F.
4. Top with your favorite hamburger toppings (suggested: lettuce, tomato, onion, and barbecue sauce).
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