Grilled Lamb Burgers & Yogurt-Cilantro Sauce


Spiced Lamb Burgers on the Grill  |  Yogurt-Cilantro Sauce  |  Chilled Cucumber Chips



The heat, which descended upon the Bay area this week, finally began to subside yesterday evening as soft, cool breezes returned accompanied by a layer of fog pouring over the Golden Gate Bridge…just in time for the yacht club’s Friday racing series.  Speaking of sailing…


It is the Summer of Racing for the America’s Cup here in San Francisco this July.  We often see the racing boats out and about on the Bay…Michael has often been able to watch the boats in action up close on his ferry ride home from the City and he is nothing short of amazed at how fast those yachts move across the water.  Click here to see more photos and follow all of the action from the America’s Cup.

After lighting the charcoal fire, Michael poured us each a glass of chilled sauvignon blanc & we watched “the sailing channel” for a bit before heading in to prepare this incredibly easy dinner…summer is almost here!

Our simple lamb burgers this evening were enhanced by a coating of Baharat {a Middle Eastern spice blend of peppercorns, coriander seeds, cinnamon, cloves, allspice, cumin, cardamom and nutmeg…click here for the recipe} which I had prepared last week for this dish.  The mixture is extremely aromatic and really adds a wonderful flavor to lamb.  With the spice mix already prepared I turned my attention to the yogurt sauce that would top our burgers.  This recipe makes more than what we needed to top our 5 burgers but the left-over sauce will be used as a dip for freshly cut carrots, celery, cucumbers & radishes which will be enjoyed as snacks throughout the weekend…

Yogurt-Cilantro Sauce {adapted from Jerusalem, A Cookbook by Yotam Ottolenghi & Sami Tamimi}

  • 2 cups Greek yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 large cloves garlic {or 3 small}, pressed
  • ¾ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • Sea salt & ground white pepper to taste
  1. Place the yogurt in a mixing bowl and stir in the lemon juice to slightly thin the yogurt.  Add the remaining ingredients, mixing well to combine.  Chill sauce in the fridge while the burgers cook.  Serve cold.


Spiced Lamb Burgers

  • 2½ pounds ground lamb
  • 2-3 tablespoons Baharat
  1. Divide ground meat & form burger patties.  Coat both sides of the patties with Baharat and set aside, allowing the meat to come to room temperature.
  2. Grill burgers until desired doneness:  BE CAREFUL…lamb cooks a bit faster than beef burgers.  We like to use a meat thermometer to avoid over-cooking.  We remove our burgers from the grill when they reach an internal temperature of 140°F {for medium rare} as the meat will continue to cook as it rests for 3-5 minutes.
  3. Serve burgers on top of a bed of spinach & red onion and spoon Yogurt-Cilantro sauce over meat.



If you are in the mood for a bit of bread {as we were} slightly toasted brioche buns work well.  Assemble the sandwiches with the spinach & onion below the burger {the heat from burger will slightly wilt the spinach} and top with the Yogurt-Cilantro sauce which will break down a bit {also from the heat of the burger} and melt into and around the meat…oh my, these were delicious!


For the Chilled Cucumber Chips, simply wash & slice 1 large English {seedless} cucumber and then top with a seasoned salt {I used an all-season’s salt from Simply Organic spices} to taste.  Serve the cucumber chips cold…


Enjoy the rest of your weekend!


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