Posted on: 19th Nov 2016 by: Aldo Zilli
500g boneless, skinless chicken thighs
1 small onion, very finely chopped
A few sprigs of tarragon, finely chopped (optional)
1 tsp dried oregano
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 burger buns, cut in half
1 tbsp mayonnaise
1 tbsp mustard
1 large tomato, sliced
PREPARATION: 15 MINUTES
COOKING TIME: 10 MINUTES
Make sure the chicken thighs are well chilled, or even partially frozen, as this will make them much easier to chop. Using a very sharp knife, dice the chicken as finely as possible, making sure you include any attached fat. To check you have chopped it finely enough, squeeze some of it together in your hand – it should clump into a ball quite easily.
Put the chicken into a bowl and add the onion, some of the tarragon, if using, and the oregano. Add half a teaspoon of salt and some pepper. Divide the chicken into 4 portions and shape into burgers about 2cm thick.
Heat a large griddle or a frying pan to medium hot. Brush the burgers with a little of the oil then place them on the griddle or pan – space well apart if possible. Leave them to cook for 4 minutes, without moving them, then carefully lift them off with a metal spatula and turn them over. The burgers should be well seared and lift off easily; if they don’t, leave them for a little longer. Cook them on the other side for 4 minutes, then carefully flip them over again and cook for another minute on each side.
Once the burgers are cooked through, remove them from the griddle or pan and set aside to rest for a couple of minutes. Toast the cut side of the buns very lightly. Whisk the mayonnaise with the mustard and stir in the rest of the tarragon, if using.
Spread this on one side of each bun then add the lettuce, tomato and burger. You could add more herbs or some chilli or citrus zest to your burger mix. Or keep them plain and add bacon, avocado slices or creamy blue cheese.
ROSE & PISTACHIO ICE CREAM
200g pistachios, plus extra for garnish
6 egg yolks
300ml double cream
1-3 tsp rose water
Candied rose petals, for garnish
PREPARATION: 30 MINUTES (plus 2 hours 30 minutes’ infusing and freezing time)
COOKING TIME: 15-20 MINUTES
Put the pistachios in a large frying pan and toast them very lightly for a couple of minutes. Leave the pistachios to cool, then grind them as finely as possible in a food processor.
Put the pistachios in a saucepan with the milk and 40g of the sugar, then heat until the sugar has dissolved. Allow the milk to come almost to boiling point, then remove the pan from the heat, cover and leave to infuse. Leave the mixture for at least an hour for a decent flavour, or overnight if you can.
Strain the milk and pistachio mixture thoroughly, then reheat to just below boiling point. Put the egg yolks in a bowl with the remaining sugar then whisk until the mixture is light and mousse-like.
Pour the infused milk over the egg yolks, stirring to combine, then pour everything back into the saucepan. Stir over a very low heat until the mixture is the consistency of a fairly thin custard. If you are worried about the mixture curdling, you can pour it into a bowl and place it over a pan of simmering water, then stir.
Remove the custard from the heat and leave it to cool down. Chill thoroughly, then pour in the double cream. Mix to combine then gradually add the rose water, tasting the custard as you go.
Churn the mixture in an ice-cream maker, then put it in the freezer for a couple of hours before serving. If you don’t have an ice-cream maker, freeze the mixture in a plastic bowl and whisk at regular intervals to get air into it. Continue until it is too hard to work. Serve garnished with the candied rose petals and chopped pistachios.