I have long been a fan of the Jennie-O turkey products. They make a lovely juicy ground turkey. Their deli lunch meats are good. Turkey franks from Jennie-O are about as good as turkey franks get. As a younger woman, I adored their turkey roast with gravy. It was a staple of my diet. So, when I bought a box of 12 Jennie-O Turkey Burgers, I was expecting great things. Instead, it was a big hassle.
The burgers are vacuum packed with two in a package. The individual quarter pound burgers are separated by a piece of paper. That’s the problem. I use the word ‘separated’ loosely. After I pulled the burgers out of their plastic outer wrapping, I couldn’t get the burgers to come apart. I twisted and pried gently with a knife. Then, I got a bit more assertive with the knife. No luck, since I couldn’t get enough leverage to pry on them.
Surely heat would do the trick. I placed the unwrapped burgers and paper in a lightly greased skillet and covered them with a small lid. I cooked them on medium for about 3 minutes. Then, I pulled gently upward on the paper. It tore off in my hand. Prying with a knife did not work. This is where I tell you to be careful not to burn yourself! I tried to get my fingers under the top burger, but it mushed in my hand. The paper was still stuck to the bottom burger and kept tearing as I tried to get it off. Finally, the burgers were separated, and I had picked all of the paper out of the pan. But the burgers were no longer neat, round burgers. One was a mushy mess and the other was in half. I turned the heat down to extra low and went to the freezer for another package.
I opened the plastic covering and put the two burger package in the microwave. After 30 seconds on high and a 30 second wait, I tried to separate the burgers. Nope, no dice. I flipped the package over and nuked it for another 30 seconds. At that point, they were mushy around the edges, but firmly stuck together. I carried them over to the pan and put them in. After I pulled about a third of the mushy burger off, I could separate them. Again, I picked paper out of the pan. Nothing in there resembled a whole burger.
Not one to waste Jennie-O turkey burgers, I chopped the whole mess up and made it into loose meat. I fried the turkey loose meat until it was done, then I added my favorite barbecue sauces. The meat and sauce was cooked on low for 20 minutes. You need to watch it to make sure that it doesn’t burn. Add a bit of water if you need to. The resulting turkey loose meat with barbecue sauce was delicious on a bun with pickles.
I bought this product for convenience and was disappointed. While the turkey that Jennie-O uses in this burger is just what you would expect from Jennie-O, the packaging needs to be reworked. You are much better off to buy the Jennie-O ground turkey and shape it into your own burgers. If any of you figure out how to get these frozen, prepackaged turkey burgers apart without mangling them, please e-mail me or tell us all about it in the BellaOnline Sandwiches Forum. Otherwise, I see a lot of turkey loose meat in my future.