Ramadan has absolutely flown by- it’s been busy, peaceful, productive, serene, full of blessings and absolutely perfect this year. I just hope we’ve maximized our potential for rewards taking every opportunity to seek them throughout the month. Insha’Allah, I hope and pray the same for all of you. One of the biggest blessings we’ve had is a house full of guests for the first three weeks of Ramadan- talk about blessings showing up at your door! It’s been wonderful, truly and honor to have people- some who fast and some who don’t or cannot. Regardless, a guest is an honor and a gift from Allah (God), so it was truly wonderful to be able to cook for them and enjoy the Iftar (and sometimes Suhoor, too) together.
One of the best dishes I made this Ramadan were these super moist and flavorful Lamb Kofta Burgers. Originally I wanted to put them on skewers and grill them, but we’ve had so much rain that it just wasn’t possible. Indoor grilling was a choice, but I opted out and felt like my guests would enjoy them as burgers, Pita Party style, with all the fixings you would see in a Mediterranean style set up, only these were burgers and not actual kebobs on a skewer.
Fresh items include: fresh thyme and fresh mint used both as garnishes as well as seasonings in the meat (you can use dried if that’s what you have), spinach and lettuce (for the toppings), whole milk yogurt (substitute with mayo, if you like).fresh tomatoes,
whole milk sheep’s feta cheese,
red onions and lemons for garnish as well as in the meat.
The spices used are easy and accessible in most grocery stores: red pepper flakes, ground cumin, ground black pepper, smoked paprika, sea salt, ground cinnamon, fresh mint from my garden (finely chopped)…
and fresh thyme from the garden, too (leaves only).
When mixed all together, the meat looks great and has such a wonderful smell! It’s mixed all together with the juice of 1/2 lemon.
The meat is formed into burgers and set on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and cooked at 425 for about 30 minutes. That’s it.
I cut Persian cucumbers to go on the side with the hummus, feta, tomatoes, spinach and yogurt- all of which are great toppings separately or in combination- however you like it.
Someone couldn’t wait for the picture to be taken and took a bit (below), but this is how we enjoyed them. In pitas, stuffed with fresh veg and topped with yogurt. The second and third ones went with hummus…
Enjoy the recipe- it’s now one of my absolute favorites and we’ll be making them again for Eid parties and gatherings, insha’Allah.I’ve recently learned about the American Lamb Board and all they’re doing to try and get people to eat more lamb, which is a GREAT thing in my opinion! They work with dhabiha halal purveyors of lamb cuts all over the country, which is absolutely wonderful because they really do have some of the finest lamb available and arecertified halal. You can ask for suppliers here on their website and learn more about the benefits of eating lamb in their super resourceful section. It’s great for teaching kids, too, since many of the products used are FREE visual tools! And, of course they even have a great recipe section.
Stay posted for our next giveaway which will feature cuts of ground lamb from Barkaat Foods, one of the vendors verified by and associated with American Lamb Board.*The meat provided for this post was courtesy of Barkaat Foods in conjunction with the American Lamb Board. All opinions are my own.
- 1 pound ground lamb
- 1 small onion, minced or grated
- 3-4 garlic cloves, minced or grated
- 2 teaspoons red chili pepper flakes
- Pinch cayenne pepper
- 2 tablespoons sea salt
- 1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon dried parsley
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 tablespoon fresh mint, finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves, finely chopped
- Juice of half lemon
- Persian Cucumbers
- Whole Milk Yogurt
- Sheep's Milk Feta
- Sliced Tomatoes
- Red Onions
- Freshly baked pita bread
- Prepare a baking sheet by lining it with parchment paper. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
- Place the lamb in a large bowl. Grate the onion using a cheese grater; alternatively mince finely with a knife. Do the same with the garlic.
- Add the chili pepper flakes, cayenne pepper, sea salt, ground black pepper, ground cinnamon, ground cumin and dried parsley. Add the chopped mint and thyme, too.
- Juice the lemon directly into the meat mixture, removing any seeds that might fall into it. Combine the meat with clean hands and form into equal size burgers. Place each one onto the parchment paper and into the pre-heated oven.
- Meanwhile, prepare all the toppings by chopping and placing in individual bowls. Refrigerate (except the bread) until ready to use.
- Bake for 30 minutes, or until the meat is cooked to your preference. Remove from heat and cover then let rest for about five minutes. Heat the bread while the meat rests.
- Place meat and toppings on the table for easy self-serving so that guests can build the sandwiches they way the like.
- The one spice that is predominant in this recipe is cinnamon and that's because it's a favorite of mine and I personally think it tastes wonderful this way; if you're not a fan, simply hold back by about half of the recommended measurement.