What’s for Dinner? Greek Lamb Burgers with Eggplant
Dinner on the table in 35 minutes, and it’s a balanced, satisfying, and has plenty of vegetables and tons of bright flavor? Yes, please.
This dish, from The Clean Plates Cookbook, features lamb, a healthy, super-tasty source of protein that’s also loaded with iron, zinc, selenium and vitamin B12. If you find cooking with it intimidating, this is a perfect way to try it, since the lamb is ground, so it’s easy to handle. The burgers are family-pleasing, the eggplant is tender and smoky from the grill, and the lemon aioli brings it all together.
Greek Lamb Burgers with Eggplant and Lemon “Aioli”
2/3 cup/160 mL grass-fed organic plain yogurt or kefir
2 teaspoons chopped fresh mint
1 garlic clove, minced
Fine sea salt to taste
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 ¼ pounds/565 g ground grass-fed lamb
1/4 cup/15 g chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 large shallot, diced finely
2 medium-size Asian-style eggplants, halved lengthwise
Organic extra-virgin olive oil, for brushing
2 pita breads (sprouted wheat, gluten-free, or your favorite variety), cut in half to make 4 pita pockets
3 cups/40 g loosely packed mixed salad greens
Zest half of the lemon. Juice the lemon to yield 2 teaspoons of juice. In a small bowl, combine the lemon zest, lemon juice, yogurt, mint, garlic, and salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
In a large bowl, combine the lamb, parsley, and shallot and gently mix well. With dampened hands, shape the mixture into four oblong patties about 4 inches/10 cm long and 3/4 inch/2 cm thick. Sprinkle both sides with salt and pepper and set aside.
Arrange the eggplant on a plate. Brush both sides with oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Prepare the grill to medium-high heat and lightly oil the grate. Grill the patties to desired doneness, about 3 ½ minutes per side for medium. Grill the eggplant until tender and lightly charred, about 3 minutes per side. During the minute, place the pitas on the grill and turn to lightly toast both sides.
To serve, cut each piece of eggplant in half crosswise and place two pieces in each pita pocket. Add the lamburgers, mixed greens, and some of the lemon aioli. Serve hot, passing the remaining lemon aioli at the table.
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