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Chicken Burgers, Thai-Style

These were invented when I was trying to think up new and flavorful ways to use chicken while keeping out bad stuff. Insanely flavorful, these can be served with a side salad or on a gluten-free bun.

makes 4

1 pound ground chicken (preferably dark meat)

2 cloves garlic, very finely minced

⅔ cup cilantro, finely chopped

2 shallots, very finely minced

1 teaspoon very finely minced red chili (or more or less, however hot you like it)

2 teaspoons fish sauce

½ teaspoon coarse sea salt

½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 tablespoons neutral oil (like canola, grape-seed, or safflower oil)

1. Thoroughly mix the chicken with the garlic, cilantro, shallots, red chili, fish sauce, salt, and pepper. Form the mixture into 4 burgers, each about ¾ inch thick.

2. Heat a grill or grill pan over medium heat. Rub each burger on both sides with a bit of the safflower oil and grill for about 8 minutes on the first side and another 5 minutes on the second, or until nicely marked and firm to the touch.