It’s hard to think of a better pair than burgers and fries. Except for maybe brunch and mimosas.
Call me crazy but I had been craving a lamb burger for at least a week (Charlotte has some viable lamb burger options) but I thought I would take this craving as a challenge to create my own. Maybe, just maybe it would be as good as my beloved Niman Ranch Colorado lamb burger with crispy eggplant from The Liberty. Undoubtedly less expensive and a touch lighter to boot.
Google google google. That’s how it always starts.
I found this recipe on Allrecipes and ran with it. Allrecipes is a great resource because of the extensive user reviews, modifications and pictures. It always helps to have an idea of what your food is going to look like.
I made several modifications based on our preferences (I scaled down the red pepper and added roasted garlic), and actually cooked them on the stove. It was a little chilly for grilling! Honestly though, I think cooking them on the stove is what kept them extra juicy! These burgers turned out to be INCREDIBLE. I can’t wait to make them again!!
Here is my version of the recipe:
Lamb Burgers (makes two patties)
- 2/3 lb. ground lamb (I found mine at Whole Foods)
- 1 Tbsp. Chopped Mint leaves
- 1 Tbsp. Chopped Cilantro
- 1 tsp. dried oregano
- 3-4 cloves roasted garlic-mashed (recipe below)
- 1 tsp. white balsamic vinegar
- 1 tsp. molasses
- 1/2 tsp. cumin
- 1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
- dash of salt and pepper (plus more to sprinkle on top of the patties)
- 2 pita rounds (warmed in the oven prior to serving!)
- Feta Cheese
Put meat in a mixing bowl. Add mint, cilantro, oregano, vinegar, molasses, cayenne pepper, cumin, salt, pepper, roasted garlic and combine well with hands.
Form into two patties. Season the outside of the patties generously with salt and pepper. This will help give the burgers a nice flavorful crust.
Pour 1-2 tbsp. oil in a frying pan over high heat. When the oil is very hot, add the patties and cook for about 5 minutes on each side. The high heat will help you get a nice crust on the burgers. I then reduced the heat to medium/medium high after the first few minutes. You be the judge. Add a slice of feta to the top of your patties to let it melt just a bit. You can speed up this process by holding a lid over your patties to help concentrate the heat.
TLO tip: Add a thin layer of Apricot Preserves or other sweet jam to one side of your pita. The subtle sweetness plays really well with the other flavors in this recipe. Just go with it!
I think what sends this burger over the top is the addition of roasted garlic. The flavors are so complex and just downright delicious. All you do is chop the top of the garlic head to expose the tips of the cloves. The garlic gets caramelized with a generous splash of olive oil, salt and pepper. Wrap it up like a ball in a piece of foil. Place in a 400 degree oven and roast for 30-35 minutes. You’ll know it’s ready when the garlic cloves start to squeeze out of their skins. SO EASY. SO GOOD.
Save the other half of these for your tzatziki to put on the pita “buns”.
In a food processor, combine plain Greek yogurt-I used one container of 0% Fage, 3-4 cloves of roasted garlic with 1/2 of a seeded and peeled cucumber, 1 tsp. dried dill, 1 tbsp. fresh mint, 1 tbsp. lemon juice and salt and pepper to taste. Ideally you would make this advance to let the flavor meld, but I made it right before I served dinner and it was excellent! I even deemed it the:
Baked Sweet Potato Fries:
I discovered this recipe for Thai spiced baked sweet potato fries from Family Fresh Cooking a couple of years ago. I love these so much I even made them before I had a potato peeler. The curry paste is not overwhelming. Just the perfect accompaniment to a lamb burger if you ask me. I like to serve them with Sriracha ketchup!
- 2 large Sweet Potatoes -peeled and cut into thin strips (the thinner they are the crispier they get)
- 2 tbsp. Canola Oil
- 1 tbsp. Lemon or Lime Juice
- 2 tsp. Thai curry paste (I use Patak’s)
- 1/2 tsp. Soy Sauce
- 1 tsp. Brown Sugar
- 1/2 tsp. dried Cilantro (I used fresh)
- 1/4 tsp. Garlic Salt (I used garlic powder)
- 1/4 tsp. ground Ginger
- 1/8 tsp. ground Cinnamon
Preheat oven to 425 F. Peel and slice your potatoes.
Make sauce by combining all of the other ingredients. Coat your potato slices and give a nice sprinkle of salt on top. Roast for 35 minutes, flipping half way.
Dinner is served!
You have to make these lamb burgers and fries!! They are easy, flavorful, and if you are craving a burger, well 20 bucks says it’ll hit the spot (and I’m stingy!)
The Lady Olive