I grew up eating some of the best home cooked dinners by my mom who is basically the Martha Stewart of San Jose. Minus the prison time and insider trading. She made my siblings and I halloween costumes, pillow cases for the couch, wreaths, and the best freaken spaghetti you’ve ever had in your life! She also made various dishes with lamb because it was my fathers favorite and now it is one of my favorites! It has been my mission to make the Ultimate Lamb Burger, and here it is! It’s just the right amount of salty, juicy, and yes just a little bit spicy! A juicy lamb patty sitting on top of a toasted ciabatta bun, spicy whipped herbed feta, caramelized onions and fennel, juicy ripe tomatoes, and if you want mixed baby greens. I plead with you, if you’ve never really liked lamb to give this a try! They flavors melt together in a symphony of delight throughout your mouth! I made this recipe for Unpretentious Pairings for One, so I it makes one fresh burger and one for leftovers. Please enjoy!
Whipper Feta Spread:
1 Cup Feta Cheese
1/4 Cup Heavy Cream
1 Seranno Pepper
1/2 Cup Mixed Green Herbs (I used Parsley, Tarragon, Dill, and Chives)
Salt to Taste
Caramelized Fennel and Onions:
1/2 Large White or Yellow Onion Thinly Sliced
1/2 Large Bulb of Fennel Thinly Sliced
1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
1 Tablespoon Butter
Salt and Pepper to Taste
3/4 Pound Ground Lamb
Salt and Pepper to Taste
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
2 Ciabatta Bread Buns
Whipped Feta Spread
Caramelized Fennel and Onions
Mixed Greens (optional)
For the Whipped Feta Spread place all ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Taste to make sure it doesn’t need more salt. Cover and put in the fridge till later.
Take the lamb out of the fridge, divide it in half, and shape them in to equal patties. Set aside and let come to room temp for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile make the caramelized fennel and onions. Heat olive oil in a pan on medium heat, add onions and fennel, sprinkle with salt and pepper, give them a good stir and cover. Return every couple of moments to stir and once they are translucent and soft add the butter. Continue to watch them brown until everything has reduced by more than half and the mixture is almost sticky. The whole process should take 15-20 minutes. Turn off heat and set aside.
It is time to grill the lamb burgers. Season both sides of the lamb patties with salt and pepper. Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a pan (cast iron is preferable) on medium high and grill the patties 3-5 minutes on each side. Gently press on the patties after you flip them. Once finished move to platter, cover with soil, and let rest while you assemble the burger.
Cut a ciabatta bun in half, brush with olive oil, and grill till lightly toasted. Grab the whipped feta spread and smear (as much as you like) on the bottom half. Place one of the burger patties on top, take half the caramelized onions and fennel on the burger, grab two slices of tomatoes, and finish with the top of the bun. Finished! Serve with a lightly dressed salad or some fires if desired and dig in!
Notes: You could do this recipe with beef if you really wish. You can add baby mixed greens on top of the burger if you desire I just really enjoy it without. Lamb will not change color as much as beef, and if you are worried about safety measure the temperature and make sure they reach at least 106 °F.