The first year I was living on my own, I had a crazy schedule. I was a Trainee with a ballet company back home. I had rehearsals with the company from 9:15-5:30, and then had classes with the ballet school from 5:30-8:00. Needless to say, when I got home I was pooped! Cooking seemed like a daunting task, so I was buying food more than making it, and it was killing me. Big Sister, to the rescue! Julie, my oldest sister, gave me the Williams-Sonoma Food Made Fast: Weeknight cookbook for Christmas. There are many excellent recipes in the book, but the one I’ve made most often is for Moroccan Lamb Burgers.
The first time I made these burgers was when Lindsey came to visit. She was home from college, and came to spend a couple days at my apartment so we could have sister time. We had discussed a few options for what to make for dinner, and she made the final decision. She chose the burgers because they were unique. While I was dancing, she went to the grocery store. When I got home, we made the burgers together. It was a lot of fun, especially because it was one of very few times we had been in the kitchen together since she had gone to school.
This is one of my go-to recipes when I’m craving MEAT. I don’t often get that craving, but after getting a minor injury right before my weekend of performances began, my body was asking for it. I cooked these last night for me and my boyfriend, and am looking forward to using the leftover patties for salads.
Moroccan Lamb Burgers
From Williams-Sonoma cookbook
- 1 1/2 lbs lean ground lamb, minced
- 5 tablsepoons fresh mint, minced
- 5 tablespoons fresh parsley, minced
- 1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
- 1 1/4 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2+ teaspoon salt
- Cayenne pepper, to taste
- 1/2 cup plain yogurt
- 3/4 cup Roma tomatoes, diced
- 4 pita breads, cut into wedges
- 1 large cucumber, halved lengthwise and sliced crosswise
In a large bowl, combine the lamb, 4 tablespoons of the mint and parsley, onion, 1 teaspoon of cumin, cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon of salt, and a pinch of cayenne. Mix together with your hands, then form into 4 oval patties.
In a small bowl, combine the remaining 1 tablespoon of mint and parsley, the remaining cumin, and the yogurt. Add salt and cayenne pepper to taste, and set aside.
Cook the lamb in a heavy frying pan over medium-high heat, turning once, for about 20 minutes total**. Place one lamb patty on each plate, top with a spoonful of yogurt sauce and some diced tomatoes, and serve along with the cucumber slices and pita wedges.
**Instructions said to cook for a total of 10 minutes, but my patties were thick, and ended up needing twice as long.
The cumin and cinnamon in the patties make these burgers very unique. Serving them with pits wedges also makes it a different experience than eating your standard beef burger on a bun. It’s a fun twist on a classic.
As a side note, my sisters gave me a Williams-Sonoma gift card for my birthday that I used to get my first “big girl” knife! I bought a beauiful 8″ Wusthof Chef’s knife. If made all of the chopping for this recipe so much more fun!
This was a great meal accompanied by great memories.