I used to hate burgers. I thought burgers are what the company with the big M is trying to make out of them. Oh boy, was I wrong. Coming to Australia gave me the opportunity to try a lot of new things to eat - and the so far spurned burger was one of them. Of course I do love the traditional Bavarian mini-meat loaves. However, you never eat them inside a roll (potato salad and other salads are the common accompaniments) so you can't call them burgers.
Whenever you want to grab a quick bite in the average Aussie pub - chances are pretty high that some sort of burger is on the menue. And that's where I discovered that I really like them. Of course, the roll could be improved, most of the time. But the burgers are neither tasteless nor unbearably greasy. However, nothing can beat a homemade burger. Having some lamb mince in the freezer that was somewhat too intensely lamb-ish to eat it on its own, I decided to mix it with some beef mince. There was also some leftover feta that needed to be used and that's how this recipe was born. Even my boyfriend was quite happy to get some meat once in a while - so how many birds did I kill with just one stone?
Lamb Burgers with Feta Filling
500g beef mince
300g lamb mince
1 big onion, finely chopped
2-3 cloves of garlic
½ bunch of parsley, finely chopped
2 small eggs
2 tbsp bread crumbs, heaped
Freshly cracked pepper
Roughly 150g feta
Oil or cooking spray for frying
Yield: 8 rather big patties
In a bowl, knead both types of minces with your hands until smooth. Add all the other ingredients except feta and mix well. Note: Cookbooks usually state that you should fry onions and garlic first but my mom never does it and neither do I.
Cut the feta in 8 pieces (I made 8 rather big patties but that’s up to you. Cut the feta accordingly).
Flatten a chunk of the mince mix and put a piece of feta in the middle. Cover with some more mince and make sure you seal the sides very well (otherwise the patty will fall apart during frying or the filling will peep through as you can see above).
Heat oil in a frying pan over medium to high heat (cooking spray works well, too). Fry patties on one side until well-browned than flip over. When browned on both sides, reduce heat and continue frying until cooked through. This can take a couple of minutes depending on the thickness of your patties. If unsure, just cut into one patty and have a look if it’s still pink on the inside.
My own creation
Serve hot or cold with pita bread, tomato and cucumber slices, salad leaves, and a sauce of sour cream, salt, freshly cracked pepper and shredded fresh mint. Or serve hot with rice and chunky tomato sauce.