Turkey Suya Burger & Patacónes

Well,  this is a first– this was my contribution to an awesome idea from two friends from undergrad, and we got it on video!

We invited six friends together to pilot a series called “Breaking Bread” to simultaneously prepare burgers via zoom, tackle social distancing,  and bring people together through food. This will hopefully be the first of many sessions we’ll do with a variety of people– and we’ll have different recipes, and conversations each time.  Keep an eye out for updates on that.

By now, I know you’re hungry.


Remember that tricky suya spice (yaji) from way back? It was cool to make it myself but I dodged the challenge this time and went for the pre-made mix from an African market. This one. ..THIS ONE… is some authentically spicy yaji.

So, this week we’re making a “Suya” burger to celebrate Nigerian Democracy Day…well actually, I was craving Suya and the timing was a coincidence. I’m switching things up this time with Turkey burgers, and patacónes to really stick the landing. Remember, green plantains are basically potatoes when you fry them! You start these off as “rough chops” (see, I told you that knife skills post would be useful), fry them once, smash them, and fry them again until golden.


No eggs this time,  but I still added panko to help the burgers stick together. Otherwise,  throw in some ginger, garlic, pepper and onions.  You would normally eat suya with a side of tomatoes, onions, and cucumber…don’t worry–I’m working on it!

I didn’t drench these in yaji this time either,  but I combined it with some extra paprika, parsley, and salt. Once you form the patties, chill them in the freezer for ten minutes, then throw them on a hot pan. Nothing special here! In other news though,  you’re going to make your own pickles…are you ready?



Combine some sugar, salt, water, and cider vinegar, and get it hot enough to boil. Then, toss in sliced cucumbers, onions, and garlic. Season to taste, and let it cool. That’s it.

Like I said, this time I made this on zoom with a group of people for a new series called “Breaking Bread”, and as you’d expect with six people– we ended up with six very different burgers. It was pretty cool way to connect with new people– and I’m already looking forward to the next time. Who knows what we’ll do next? Who knows, maybe you can join the next one!


Let’s cook.

You’ll need:

2 lbs Ground Turkey

1 Bell Pepper, diced

2 Green Plantains, rough chops

1/2 Onion, diced

1/2 Cup Tomatoes, diced

1/2 Parsley, chopped

2 Cucumbers, sliced thinly

1 Cup Panko

2 Tbs Garlic, minced

1 Tsp Ginger, minced

1 Tbs Suya Spice

1 Tbs Paprika

1 Tbs Mustard Seeds

1 Clove

1 Tsp Dried Thyme

1 Tsp Sugar

2 Cup Vegetable Oil

1 Cup Cider Vinegar

Salt & Pepper to taste

  1. Combine turkey, pepper, ginger, half the garlic, thyme, parsley, half the onion and panko in a large bowl. Add olive oil if the mixture doesn’t stick together. Season with suya spice, salt, paprika, and salt. Form the patties, then chill in the freezer for ten minutes.
  2. Heat a pan to medium high, and sear the burgers on both sides. Cover the pan to finish cooking.
  3. Combine cider vinegar, salt, sugar, and remaining spices in a separate pot. Bring to a boil, then add cucumber, remaining onion, and garlic. Cover the pot, and boil for fifteen minutes, then transfer to a jar, and let it cool.
  4. In a third pan, heat vegetable oil on medium. Season the plantain with salt, then fry until lightly golden on all sides. Remove from the oil, flatten, then fry again until golden from on both sides. Remove from the oil, and season with lime juice and salt. Keep warm
  5. Toast your buns, and plate the burger with pickles, onion, tomato, and your desired condiments.





7 Comments Add yours

  1. Kimi San Bhopal says:

    Looks very yummy


    1. ForestO says:

      Thanks! I hope you’ll try it one day haha


  2. I could literally eat this from the picture on your blog 😍


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