So, I am kind of curious. Are you a procrastinator?
I know this is totally random, but I was just thinking about it as I was sitting here… procrastinating. Or sitting here letting my mind drift/stress/think about food not related to this post. It’s pretty obvious that I have issues with focusing.
But I have noticed that when words do not want to flow, instead of thinking about what to write, my mind begins to drift. Then I check Instagram, and in today’s case I spend the next fifty seconds of my life watching Instagram videos of my youngest brother KILL it up on Mt.Hood. I have to say, it was a good distraction. Seeing that white glacier against the blue sky is the greatest. I am (unbelievably) kind of wishing I was there instead of at home. You see, it’s sort of been raining here. Like a lot, and as you have probably guessed by now, I really hate the rain.
Anyway, normally I am not a procrastinator. In fact I try to get things done right away so that they are not hanging over my head, but when it comes to writing, at times I can struggle and I have grown into the habit of procrastinating.
Not so badly that I put things off for days or anything, but that is only because I don’t have days to be able to put stuff off. More like five minutes or so.
Does that count as procastinating?
Ok, enough about my issues, let’s get down to burgers.
I made them with lamb!! I am kind of excited about this because I have to admit, lamb sort of scares me a bit. I know that is ridiculous, but I only grew up with beef and chicken. Not pork, not veal and definitely not lamb. I have since familiarized myself with pork, but veal and lamb are still outsiders.
Veal might stay and outsider forever, but I am liking lamb. These burgers were awesome and I think the lamb works really well with these middle eastern flavors.
If you are not a fan of lamb swap beef or chicken, but if you can swing it, I would try the lamb. It’s fun to switch up the everyday burger.
Also, apricots?? These are new to me too, but I wasn’t scared of them at all. They are fruit, and I pretty much love all fruit, so these I was excited about, and I do believe that apricots are made just for chutney. Actually, I don’t think I had the best apricots, but once cooked down they were delicious. They’re the perfect condiment for a Moroccan burger like this.
Oh, and then there is the final layer of flavor. Pistachio feta pesto. It’s so good. It’s basically a lot of feta that gets kicked up with olive oil, mint and pistachios.
So, to sum things up, we’ve got – kicked up feta pesto, on top of apricot chutney, on top of Moroccan burgers.
PS. DO NOT skip any of the elements of this burger. Just don’t.
Moroccan Spiced Lamb Burgers with Apricot-Pepper Chutney + Pistachio Feta Pesto
Serving Size: 4
- 1 1/2 pound lean ground lamb (or if you prefer ground beef or even chicken)
- 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro or parsley, chopped (I use cilantro)
- 1 clove garlic, minced or grated
- 1 teaspoon fresh lemon zest
- 1-2 tablespoons [harissa | http://www.halfbakedharvest.com/homemade-harissa-spicy-red-pepper-sauce/] (or 1/2 teaspoon cumin + pinch of cayenne pepper)
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 4 homemade [Naan | http://www.halfbakedharvest.com/homemade-naan-step-step-photos/] or [Pita Bread | http://www.halfbakedharvest.com/traditional-greek-pita-bread/], toasted for serving
- Apricot Chutney
- 6 ripe apricots, diced
- 1/2 a red onion, chopped
- 1 small red pepper, diced
- 1 jalapeño, seeded + diced
- 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1/4-1/3 cup honey (I used closer to 1/3 cup)
- 1/4 teaspoon salt + pepper
- pinch of cayenne
- 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
- Pistachio Feta Pesto
- 1 1/2 cups feta cheese, crumbled
- 4 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro or mint (I used a mix)
- 2 tablespoon salted pistachios, chopped
- pinch of crushed red pepper
To make the burgers add the ground lamb, cilantro or parsley, garlic, lemon zest, [harissa | http://www.halfbakedharvest.com/homemade-harissa-spicy-red-pepper-sauce/], cinnamon and pinch of salt and pepper to a bowl. Mix until just combined and then form the meat into 4 equal size patties (or 8 smaller patties). Place on a plate and put in the fridge until ready to cook.
To make the chutney. Add a drizzle of olive oil to a medium size skillet. Once hot, add the red onion and cook about 2-3 minutes or until the onion is soft. Add the apricots, red pepper and jalapeño, cook about 3-5 minutes or until the apricots have broken down and softened. Reduce the heat to low and add the apple cider vinegar, honey, cayenne and pinch of salt and pepper. Simmer the mixture until most of the liquid has evaporated, but is still pourable, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the cilantro. Allow to cool and then transfer to a glass jar. Store in the fridge (I like to warm this before I put it over my burgers).
To make the pesto add the feta, olive oil, cilantro or mint, pistachios, crushed red pepper and a pinch of pepper to a bowl. Toss well and let sit for at least 15 minutes to allow the flavors to mend together.
Meanwhile heat your grill or a grill pan to high heat. Grill the burgers for 4 to 5 minutes per side for medium rare or longer for your desired doneness.
Divide the burgers among the naan or pita. Spread the chutney over the burgers and top with feta pesto. Sandwich together and happy eating!
*Feta Pesto adapted from Summer Food.
PSS. You need to make the homemade Naan. And probably some extra apricot chutney + feta pesto too – more for scooping and eating on the side… Really, you should take note of these tips, you’ll appreciate them later!