We loved the notion of a shrimp burger, one on par with a crab cake but made with shrimp that could be served on a toasted bun or on top of salad greens. Our early tests produced burgers that were dry, mushy, or rubbery, but with a few key steps we avoided these textural problems. We used a food processor to get a combination of textures—finely chopped pieces of shrimp to help bind the burger and larger, bite-size chunks. A minimal amount of bread crumbs were also necessary to bind the burgers. We found that packing the burgers firmly made them dense and rubbery, so we handled them gently when shaping. To help prevent them from falling apart during cooking, we allowed them to firm up in the refrigerator. Do not overprocess the shrimp in step 1 or the burgers will have a pasty texture. Serve with lettuce, sliced tomato, sliced red onion, and/or tartar sauce. for the nutritional information for this recipe.
12 ounces extra-large shrimp (21 to 25 per pound), peeled, deveined, and tails removed
¼ cup panko bread crumbs
1 scallion, sliced thin
1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley
½teaspoon grated lemon zest
1 teaspoon vegetable oil
2 hamburger buns
2. Whisk panko, mayonnaise, scallion, parsley, lemon zest, salt, pepper, and cayenne together in large bowl. Gently fold in processed shrimp until just combined.1. Pulse shrimp in food processor until there is an even mix of finely minced and coarsely chopped pieces of shrimp, about 7 pulses, scraping down sides of bowl as needed.
3. Scrape shrimp mixture onto small baking sheet. Divide mixture into 2 equal portions, gently flatten each portion into 1-inch-thick patty, and press shallow divot in center of each patty. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 15 minutes.
4. Heat oil in 10-inch nonstick skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Gently place burgers in skillet and cook until crisp and browned on both sides, about 4 minutes per side. Serve burgers on buns.