Brian, being the well-trained husband that he is, professes to like everything I cook for him. But some meals he relishes with much more gusto than others, naturally, and over the years, I've become adept at interpreting his feedback. If he says "It's not bad," voice trailing off, or he douses his plate with ketchup (both rare occurrences, happily), he's most definitely not a fan of the creation I've set in front of him. When he offers an upbeat "It's good," without much in the way of elaboration, I know he likes the dish perfectly well. But when he loves—I mean, really really loves—something? I get a reaction along the lines of "Awesome! It's great! What's in it? How did you make it? Blah blah blah! Blah blah blah!"
The star of today's post—Herby Lamb Burgers—is a dish that triggers a round of enthusiastic gushing every time. It also has a few other things going for it: it's inexpensive, quick to whip up, and, most importantly, one of my favorite dinners, too. It's also supremely flexible. Use the suggested herbs, or root around the crisper to see what else you have on hand. Gamey and bold, ground lamb can take on lots of flavor without losing its own. Usually I serve these with a fluffy rice pilaf; if I'm feeling lazy, a salad and store-bought pita do the trick. Always, though, I make a quick tzatziki sauce.
HERBY LAMB BURGERS
1 pound ground lamb 2 tablespoons chopped parsley 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro 1 tablespoon chopped mint 2 small shallots, finely chopped 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped Pepper and salt to taste
Combine ingredients and mix together with your hands. Form into four patties, about 1-inch thick each, trying not to compress the meat too much. Cook in a lightly oiled skillet for about 4-6 minutes per side, or until done to your liking.
1 7-ounce container Greek yogurt 1 small cucumber, peeled, seeded, grated, and drained of excess water 1 clove garlic, finely minced Salt to taste
Combine ingredients. Refrigerate until ready to eat.
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