Saturday, January 22, 2011

Lamb Burgers with Cilantro-Mint Chutney

I adapted this from the "Mini lamb meatballs with cilantro-mint chutney" recipe in the January 2011 edition of  Sunset magazine. The original recipe was more like an appetizer course, but they did footnote it by noting that "This Indian-spiced meat mixture makes great burgers too-try them on folded naan with the chutney and a slice of tomato."

So I burgerfied this recipe, as suggested. It was incredibly moist, well-flavored and, ergo, a real keeper. I was, at first, suspicious of the addition of Greek yogurt to the chutney because I never had Greek yogurt before and thought it would taste like Yoplait. But, I was most pleasantly surprised that it was a literal doppelganger for sour cream. And since our local supermarkets didn't have Naan or pita bread, I opted for something called "Thin Buns," and that they were. I ratcheted down the onions, added more lemon juice, used egg beaters instead of a whole egg, and topped these guys with some avocados and tomatoes for the California touch. I'll bet mango chutney would also be a great condiment...

1 1/2 tsp. cumin seeds
1 tsp. ground coriander
1 tsp. ground fennel seed
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. turmeric
1 lb. ground lamb
1 large egg (or 1/4 cup of egg beaters)
1 tbsp. vegetable oil

Earth Grains Whole Wheat Thin Buns, Naan, or Pita bread

3 tbsp. low-fat Greek yogurt
1/2 minced serrano chile
1 tsp. minced ginger
1/2 tsp. salt
2 cups loosely packed cilantro
1 cup loosely packed mint leaves
2/3 cup chopped onion (about 1/4 of an onion)
2 tsp. lemon juice (or more, to taste)

1. In a small saute pan, toast cumin seed over medium heat until fragrant (3-5 minutes).  Grind in a spice grinder. Place 1 tsp. into a medium bowl and reserve the remaining for the chutney.

2. Add ground coriander, fennel, black pepper, cinnamon, salt, turmeric, lamb, and egg to the bowl with the 1 tsp. of ground cumin. Mix gently and chill until firm enough to handle, about 15 minutes.

3. CHUTNEY: Put all chutney ingredients and remaining reserved cumin into a blender/food processor into blend until smooth. Spoon into a serving bowl.

4. Wet hands and form ground lamb mixture into four burgers. Add 1 tbsp. of vegetable oil to a non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Add burgers, cover, and sear on both sides. Continue cooking, covered, for about 8-10 minutes until meat is cooked through. Let rest 3-5 minutes before plating.

5. Place burgers on Naan, pita bread, or the thin buns. Top with tomato & avocado slices, and the cilantro-mint chutney.

Ground cinnamon, coriander seed, cumin seed, cayenne pepper, black pepper, turmeric. I didn't have fennel seed in this iteration, but it still turned out great.

Clockwise, from bottom left to right: black pepper, coriander seed (you can grind these or just use the pre-ground stuff), cumin seed, ground cinnamon, cayenne pepper, turmeric, and kosher salt in the middle.

Saute the whole cumin seed in a pan over medium heat until fragrant (less than 5 minutes).

Grind the toasted cumin seeds in a spice grinder (i.e., inexpensive coffee bean grinder).

Add all the spices and salt to the 1 tsp. of the freshly ground cumin seeds in the medium glass bowl (the rest of the ground cumin is reserved for the chutney).

1 lb. of ground lamb.

Add lamb & 1 large egg (or 1/4 cup of egg beaters) to spice mixture. Mix together gently.

Shape into 4 burgers.

For the Chutney: Greek Yogurt. Tastes just like sour cream.

1 tsp. of minced ginger.

1/2 a serrano chili, seeded and minced.

2 bunches (2 cups) of chopped cilantro.

1 cup of chopped mint leaves.

3/4 cup of onion (about 1/3 of an onion).

2 tsp. of lemon juice (or more, to taste).

Chutney ingredients in the food processor.

All blended.

Chutney, avocado and tomato slices.


We didn't have Naan or Pita bread on hand, so this was a good alternative.

Drain the burgers on paper towels and let rest at least 5 minutes before serving.

No comments:

Post a Comment