Why I Am Posting These Recipes
I believe that it is healthier for an individual and for the planet to reduce the consumption of animal products in the human diet. However, I love to eat all kinds of delicious food, and find it really, really difficult to go totally vegetarian. Also, my family protests if I serve too many vegetarian meals in a row. So I am committed to making an effort to move towards a vegetarian diet without wholly doing so. I will post recipes several times a week that represent my philosophy of eating well, eating healthy, eating local. Most recipes will be easy to prepare, as I have a busy life. So I expect my followers to be people who love to cook and eat well, want to try to help the planet through their eating (by eating local foods and trying to reduce the use of meat in our diets), and have many other things to do each day besides cook.
Sunday, April 8, 2012
Kait's Grilled Greek Lamb Burgers with Feta
Yesterday, I was driving through Vermont and stopped at this fabulous local food grocery store called "W.A.A.W.W.E. Family Farms Market." It stands for "We Are All What We Eat." You'll find it at the corner of Rte. 10 and Rte. 102 in Chester, Vermont . If you happen to live near there or have a reason to drive near there, you should check it out! They sell all kinds of local foods, including various meats, dairy products, produce, cheese, and many other things. It is the most expansive selection of local food products I have ever seen in a single store. I was in heaven! The woman who worked there, Kait, suggested a way to cook a lamb meatloaf or burger. Since my oven is not working, we decided to go for the burger form and cook them on the grill. She told me the ingredients to use, and approximate proportions, but I measured out what I used so that you could have a real recipe here. They were delicious! And I used ground lamb, feta, and eggs that were locally sourced! Local ingredients are better for the planet because a) you eliminate the oil consumption that is part of the transportation cost to the planet and b) food produced on a small, local farm is likely to cause less environmental stress. My husband whipped up a dip to serve with it using a packaged lemon spinach dip blend that we purchased at this market. The dip mix was produced by Halladay's Harvest Barn in Bellows Falls, VT (package says you can order online at www.halladays.com or call 802-463-3471). The ingredients include spinach, lemon, onion, pepper and spices; you could buy another lemon spinach dip that you might see in your local market or experiment by mixing together the listed ingredients (you'll have to guess which "spices" would taste good). Anyway, my husband mixed 2 TBS of this dip blend with 1/2 cup local organic plain yogurt and 1/2 cup mayonnaise, plus added a little wilted fresh spinach that I had cooked in a frying pan with olive oil, garlic and salt. It made a delicious spread that made the perfect condiment to serve with these burgers.
3 lbs. ground lamb
1 c. breadcrumbs (take stale bread and process in a food processor to make crumbs)
5 TBS red wine
1/4 cup heavy cream
1 TBS oregano
1/4 tsp cinnamon
freshly ground black pepper to taste
8 oz. feta cheese, diced finely
Combine all ingredients except feta in a bowl and mix together with your hands. Add feta and mix as minimally as possible. You want the feta to be mixed throughout the meat mixture but remain in pieces. Form into patties. Sear patties on hot grill for about 2 1/2 - 3 minutes on each side, then grill covered on lower temperature for about 10 additional minutes on each side. Serve with lemon spinach dip/spread. Makes about 11 large burgers (most people eat one, but some people might eat two).