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Sunday, September 2, 2012

Food Literacy Sandwich - Ginger Turkey and Wasabi Slaw Sliders

This sandwich was created to help the nonprofit California Food Literacy Center celebrate Food Literacy Month. The ingredients are good for you, good for the planet.

For the ginger turkey burgers...

Amber Stott is the genius behind the California Food Literacy Center and Food Literacy Month. She's also the creator of Awake at the Whisk, a great blog with recipes that are as fun as they are delicious and thoughtful. She's invited several bloggers and local restaurants to invent food literacy sandwiches. Here's the definition:

Food Literacy [fu: d lit-er-uh-see]
noun: Understanding the impact of your food choices on your health, the environment, and our community.

What’s a “Food Literacy Sandwich?”
You decide! It should take the definition of food literacy (above) into consideration. Is it healthy? Is it sustainable for our planet and community? You may already have a great sandwich on your blog that fits this description. Why not change the name and re-post it to let your readers know you care about the health of our children and our planet?

For my Food Literacy Sandwich, I've called on the rich cultural resources of the Sacramento area. This is a fusion of Vietnamese and Japanese flavors, all held together with one of my weaknesses - King's Hawaiian Rolls. I made these up today and got a big thumbs up from my tester, our friend Marcus (aka Big Sexy). Dude knows food.

The slaw is full of fresh flavors, with a little fruit for sweetness. I think the creamy, lively slaw is the perfect foil for the rich flavors in the ground turkey mini-burgers. I recommend making up the meat mixture and the slaw at least a couple of hours in advance, then cooking them to order. Juicy!

Ginger Turkey and Wasabi Slaw Sliders

For the mini-burgers:
1 lb ground turkey
1 tbsp. fish sauce
2 tsp. soy sauce
1/2 tsp. toasted sesame oil
2 cloves of garlic, crushed
1 tsp. fresh grated ginger
1 tsp. fresh grated lemon grass
1 green onion, sliced

Add all the ingredients together in a medium sized bowl. (I used a micro plane grater to grate the ginger and lemon grass.) Stir with a carving fork until mixed, but do not compact the meat. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

For the Wasabi Slaw:
1 tsp. wasabi powder plus 1 tsp. hot water
2 cups thinly sliced Napa cabbage
1 cup of pea shoots
1 green onion, sliced
1/2 avocado, peeled and diced
1 tsp. rice vinegar
1/2 cup red radishes, grated
1/2 of a pear, grated
1/3 cup sour cream
1 tsp. sugar
pinch of salt

Combine the wasabi powder and hot water and let stand to rehydrate. Add the rice vinegar to the avocado and toss to coat. Run a knife through the pea shoots to cut into lengths of about 1 inch. In a large bowl, toss the cabbage, pea shoots, green onion, avocado, radishes, and pear. Mix the wasabi, sour cream, sugar and salt. Gently toss the slaw with the wasabi dressing. Cover and refrigerate until ready to assemble the sliders.

To assemble:
8 King's Sweet Hawaiian Rolls (I used Honey Wheat)

Heat a large cast iron or heavy bottomed skillet over a medium-high heat. Brush with oil or use a spray.  Use a 4 oz. ice cream scoop to measure out the sliders. Lightly press down to flatten. When the pan is hot, place the sliders in the pan and cover loosely. When the bottom has browned nicely, turn the sliders. Continue to cook until the internal temperature comes up to 165 degrees. Remove from heat.

Split the Hawaiian Rolls. Top the bottom half with one of the turkey burgers. Top the turkey burger with about 2 tablespoons slaw. Top the slow with cilantro, if desired. Top with the rest of the bun and EAT!

Makes 8 sliders.

Roll Call!

Grocery Store - ground turkey, fish sauce, soy sauce, sesame oil, rice vinegar, wasabi powder, cabbage, pea shoots, ginger, sour cream, sugar, salt, King's Hawaiian Rolls

Farmer's Market - garlic, lemon grass, green onions, avocado, pear, radishes, cilantro

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