Turkish Lamb Burgers

These Turkish lamb burgers are flavorful, filling, and just a little bit messy, so keep plenty of napkins handy. It’s worth the mess though. The burgers are rich from lamb, slightly salty from the feta and spicy/warm from cumin and garlic. Adding mint to both the burgers and the yogurt cucumber sauce adds a fresh, cool flavor to balance out the spices.

I adapted this recipe from one I found online so long ago I can’t remember where I found it. It does require a bit of pre-planning, since the meat mixture has to sit for a while for the flavors to blend. So, it’s probably best for a weekend, rather than a Tuesday dinner. However, once that’s done, the rest of the recipe comes together pretty quickly. And, it’s practically a meal all by itself.

Make the meat mixture for the burgers first, let it sit overnight or a few hours in the fridge, and then make the cucumber yogurt sauce while the burgers are cooking.

I did make this for two servings, rather than one, because half an egg isn’t so bad, but a quarter of an egg is ridiculous, even for me. 

How to get half an egg, you ask? What you do is break the egg, beat it lightly, and then pour half of it out into a separate container.  You should end up with about 3  1/4 T of egg total.  Use half that for the burgers, or approximately 1 2/3 T (5 teaspoons). Save the rest of the egg to make a cherry tomato basil frittata or a spinach and feta omelette in a day or two.  Don’t worry if it’s not exact, we’re not baking!

I broiled the burgers in my toaster oven, and put the pita on top for a minute or so to warm it up.  If you have a grill, you could use that instead.

Serve the burgers in pita bread topped with the yogurt dill sauce, then add garnishes to suit your taste.




Turkish Lamb Burgers

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 8 minutes

Total Time: 23 minutes

Category: dinner

Cuisine: Turkish

2

Turkish Lamb Burgers

Rich, savory and full of sweet/salty and warm spices, plus a jolt of mint to cool it all down.

Ingredients

    Lamb Burgers
  • 1/2 lb. ground lamb
  • 2 1/2 T (which is 7 1/2 tsp) bread crumbs
  • 1/2 egg, beaten lightly
  • 1/3 C onion, minced
  • 1/2 tsp garlic, minced (about one small clove)
  • 2 oz. feta cheese, crumbled
  • 1/3 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 T fresh mint
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • generous pinch salt
  • generous pinch pepper
  • olive oil
    Yogurt Dill Sauce
  • 1/3 C Greek yogurt
  • 1/3 C diced cucumber
  • 1/3 tsp dried dill
  • 2/3 tsp fresh mint
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

    Lamb Burgers
  1. Get a medium size bowl and add all the burger ingredients together. Mix it all thoroughly. It's best to use your hands for this (like a meatloaf) until all the ingredients are completely incorporated.
  2. Refrigerate the mixture for a few hours, or overnight for better flavor.
  3. Preheat your toaster oven to broil.
  4. Separate the meat mixture into two patties and brush lightly with olive oil on both sides.
  5. Cook for about 4 minutes, turn patties over, and then cook another 4 minutes until lamb is medium. When the burgers are nearly done (about 7 minutes in), put the pitas on top of the hot toaster oven to warm.
    Yogurt Cucumber Sauce
  1. While the lamb is cooking, make the sauce by combining all the ingredients together in a small bowl.
  2. Place the burgers in the pita and top with the sauce.

Notes

Note that the prep and cooking time are short, but you'll need inactive time of a few hours. If you have a grill, you can use that to cook the burgers, rather than the toaster oven.

Turkish Lamb Burgers Substitutions and Variations

  • Garnish with some extra crumbled feta cheese
  • Top with thinly sliced red onions
  • Add sliced tomatoes and extra chopped cucumber on top of your lamb burger
  • Make the burgers with half lamb and half ground turkey (use dark meat if you can find it); or if you don’t like lamb, just use the turkey




 

More Lamb and Yogurt Recipes

Lamb and Lentil Soup Recipe

Moussaka Without Bechamel Sauce Recipe

Homemade Chicken Shawarma with Yogurt Sauce (this is for chicken, but lamb would work too)

 

Frozen Mango Yogurt Dessert Recipe Without an Ice Cream Machine

It’s so hot and sticky in NY you can practically swim in the air.  Bleah!  Even I don’t want to turn on the stove in this weather.  When it feels like 100 degrees outside, dinner is a no cook meal.   After dinner,  it’s this frozen mango yogurt dessert recipe. It’s super-easy to make. And, you don’t need an ice cream machine or any special equipment either (a blessing in a small kitchen).  An ordinary blender (or a stick blender) will do just fine.  You also don’t have to add any sugar or honey. The recipe gets its sweetness entirely from the natural sugars in the fruit.

I’ve adapted this from Foodaholic’s frozen lemon ginger mango recipe.  She made enough for a family (I didn’t), and I also changed her technique slightly. She freezes the yogurt and the fruit separately and then blends them together.  I found it got much too hard that way.  And, it’s an extra container to wash.  So, I just put it all in the blender and hit the button.  She is right that the yogurt must be thick (Greek yogurt works best), and that it will crystallize if you leave it in the freezer too long.

If you can get good fresh mangoes, use them! If you can’t, or if you are lazy and don’t want the fuss and mess of peeling and cutting them, buy the frozen mangoes from Trader Joe’s.  Take out what you need and let the fruit defrost slightly before trying to put it in the blender.




Mango Frozen Yogurt Recipe Without an Ice Cream Machine

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 3 hours

Total Time: 3 hours, 10 minutes

Category: dessert

Cuisine: South Asian

one

one serving

Mango Frozen Yogurt Recipe Without an Ice Cream Machine

A cold, refreshing dessert that's great for super-hot summer days.

Ingredients

  • 1 banana
  • 1/2 C mango*
  • 1 1/2 tsp fresh ginger, grated
  • 1 12 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 C plain Greek yogurt
  • A drop of vanilla extract
  • Slivered almonds (for garnish)

Instructions

  1. Blend all the ingredients, except the almonds in a blender, or in a beaker with a stick blender.
  2. Scoop into a container and freeze for three or four hours.
  3. Remove from freezer and let sit for a few minutes until it softens enough to serve. Scoop into a dish and top with silvered almonds.

Notes

* If you use fresh mango, peel it and cut it into chunks. If you have the frozen kind, let it sit out for a while to defrost slightly before you try to use it.

Don't be confused by the cook time (that's really the freezing time).

Frozen Mango Yogurt Dessert Substitutions and Variations

  • Don’t have mangoes?  Try it with peaches instead
  • Add a drizzle of honey
  • Toast the almonds before adding them
  • Try a squeeze of lime instead of lemon juice
  • Be adventurous and substitute cardomom for the ginger (sort of a frozen mango lassi)

More Mango and Yogurt Recipes

Quick Chicken Mango Stir Fry Recipe

Cottage Cheese Yogurt and Fruit Salad

Indian Royal Chicken Cooked in Yogurt

Greek Yogurt Chocolate Cake