Autumn is apple time in the Pacific Northwest. The apples from our trees have been applesauced, pied, and dried, so I was fresh out – so to speak. That didn’t stop me from wanting to take advantage of what was left of apple season, so I bought a few from the local farmer’s market. Oh so good!
Yesterday I was taking stock of what was left in my baskets of fresh fruit and vegetables before we leave on a short vacation and realized I had one apple left. I also had some ground turkey that needed using, so that started the brain thinking (it does “think” every once in a while), what to make with these fresh ingredients. A recipe didn’t come together until I checked my herbs growing on the deck and noticed the sage was beautiful and plentiful as ever, even though the other herbs were dying away as they normally do in the colder weather. So my three main ingredients were chosen!
In case you are not a fan of sausage because of fennel (a regular ingredient in sausage), you will be happy to know that this recipe does not contain fennel, yet has a nice mild sausage flavor that makes it versatile to use in a number of dishes. If you do like fennel, check the end of this post for a few more sausage recipes that include it.
Adding parsley and garlic from the garden rounded out the fresh ingredients. (Note the parsley and sage are particularly large compared to most store-bought varieties.)
Chopped ingredients added to the ground turkey.
Let’s make patties! I made mine small (just larger than a good-sized meatball). You can make the patties any size that fits your needs. My thinking (yes my brain was still engaged at this point in the process) was that if I made them small they would be a good size for breakfast, or used as a hot appetizer with a dip, or included in a main dish with noodles and sauce, or, or, or…
A pound of ground turkey makes about 15 patties.
Perfect as a breakfast sausage with eggs.
A note about sage: don’t be afraid to use it fresh. A lot of people I know use it dried or powdered, and in some recipes that’s fine. However, using fresh sage does add another level of flavor to a recipe. My sage looks like it is on steroids in this photo. These sausage patties are not that small, the sage is just really huge compared to what you find in the grocery store.
If you ever consider planting and growing sage, it will grow well in a container and loves to be surrounded by basil, oregano, and rosemary plants. I have a friend who doesn’t have a yard and grows it in a pot with these herbs. Not only does it make a wonderful herb garden, but sage also adds velvety, evergreen foliage with delicate blooms to the beauty of the herb pot. It is such a hardy plant and grows year-round.
- 1 large apple
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 1 pound ground turkey
- 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
- 2 tablespoons fresh sage, minced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 teaspoons salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1-2 tablespoons olive oil
- Peel and coarsely shred apple. Place shredded apple in a tea towel and squeeze out moisture.
- Combine egg, parsley, sage, garlic, seasonings, and apple in a large bowl.
- Add turkey and mix together.
- Shape into fifteen patties (about 2 inches) or your preferred size patty. Place patties on waxed paper-lined baking sheets and refrigerate covered for about an hour. (you can leave covered in the refrigerator overnight).
- Swirl olive oil in a nonstick skillet and heat over medium heat. Cook patties in batches, 3-4 minutes on each side or until golden brown. Add more oil as needed when cooking patties.
- Check for doneness with a thermometer that reads 165°.
- They freeze nicely by laying out on a rimmed baking sheet and freezing until firm. Transfer to a freezer container or food saver bag.