Sunday, August 1, 2010

Feta-Stuffed Fig-Glazed Grilled Lamb Burgers with Red Onion Jam -- OhMy!


I am having a love affair with fig jam.  This week, I was smitten with a recipe for Fig Glazed Burgers with Red Onion Jam that was posted on "The Bitten Word".   The recipe originally comes from Southern Living Recipes, and uses ground beef and Muenster Cheese. When I think of fig jam, I tend to think of pork... or even lamb. So, I started thinking of Greek inspired ingredients, and an idea was born. I adore lamb, but my husband is so-so about it.  I bought one pound of ground lamb and 1/2 pound of ground veal. I figured the mix of meats would tone down the sometimes "stronger" flavor of lamb.  I didn't want to add too many seasonings, since I wanted the fig jam to be the star...

I added fresh oregano & parsley, from our garden. The seasoning I chose was Montreal Steak Seasoning.  It's a Rachael Ray staple, but I have to say that it's perfect for seasoning burgers.  Done.  I made four patties.  I decided to add slices of feta cheese.  I stacked one patty on top of the feta topped patty...

This feta cheese had sun-dried tomatoes and basil.  It was really tasty, and will end up in a salad very soon. 

I carefully sealed the patties together. Now, that's a patty!

The red onion jam has simple pantry ingredients.  I love my mandoline, because you'll want the slices to be rather thin. This is about four cups.  I also need fresh thyme, red wine vinegar and sugar.   In a little bit of olive oil, the onion is cooked until very tender-- about 10 minutes.

Next, 1/4 cup of sugar and 1/4 cup of the red wine vinegar is added, the the fresh thyme. The recipe says 3/4 of a teaspoon. I added more. I think that's more for dried thyme, but add what you like.  Cover the onions and cook on low-- keep warm.  Fire up the grill...

Typically, I like to make my own hamburger buns. These are Honey Wheat Hamburger Buns from Trader Joe's.  I like their ingredients, so I take a shortcut today.  Fresh spinach ties in the Greek ingredients just fine, don't you think?

 The burgers are on standby...


I'm calculating one tablespoon of fig jam per person-- and a little extra... here we go!

Though we love our Weber, we fire up the gas grill and preheat it nice and hot.  The burgers are cooked about 6 minutes, covered (they are pretty thick)... and then flipped over...

Once the  burgers are flipped, we let them cook for about 4 minutes. Craig is adding the fig jam, now. He closes the cover and let's the burgers grill over direct heat.

Doesn't this glaze look amazing?  I was licking my chops.  We cooked these until an instant read thermometer registered at 145F.  The total cooking time was about 16-18 minutes.  My husband is wary of lamb that isn't cooked past medium rare, so cook according to your liking.

We let these rest for a few minutes.  In the meantime, I crack open a cold imported beer.

Let's build a burger.   I'm questioning how important the red onion jam will be, but I add that on top of this.

Carl's Junior has nothing on this.  It's big, I'm hungry and I'm going in!

I'm happy to see that the feta cheese melted perfectly...
Can you see how moist the burger is?  It's perfectly cooked.  So, what did I think?

VERDICT: Fig jam is the perfect glaze for grilling burgers. I am so going to use this more often... I'm thinking grilled chicken burgers, grilled turkey burgers, grilled anything burgers!  My husband liked the burger, and didn't think the lamb was overpowering at all. Whew! The red onion jam is very good.  I could go with or without it, because the fig jam is what intrigued me the most.   I'm a jam maker, so I expected more of chutney or thick jam consistency with the red onion.  I am very tempted to use brown sugar, instead of white sugar next time.    As far as the burger seasonings-- I might be tempted to add some garlic to this... maybe shallots. Heck, that's the fun of making burgers! You can go wild with different ingredients.

Whatever you do, don't leave out the fig jam.  That's the cherry on the sundae. Or, in this case, it's the star of this burger.  

As always, a printable recipe is at the very bottom of this post.

Happy Grilling!






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23 comments:

Proud Italian Cook said...

Ok, don't be upset,I'm like Craig, I'm not a great lover of lamb,but when you said chicken, turkey or whatever I got excited! The gooey feta melted in the middle and that glaze! Oh that glaze...To die for! Oh yay, I'm going to try that out. For sure!

A Feast for the Eyes said...

No offense taken, Marie. I know that lamb is a love/hate kind of thing. I love it, my husband doesn't. I plan to make this using different kinds of meats. The glaze was amazing!

Ciao Chow Linda said...

Move over Marie and Stacey - Linda's coming in for the kill - and she LOVES lamb too. I've even got the homemade fig jam for the glaze and am all fired up to make this burger. Wow, what a great idea you had.

Stacey Snacks said...

Deb,
These burgers look FANTASTIC!!!
What a treat! I am not a lamb fan either, but would love to try them with turkey. WOWIE!

bellini valli said...

Look at all that gooey cheese. As soon as you mentioned feta, figs and lamb I was hooked.

Cathy said...

That's the most mouthwatering burger I've seen in a long time. I bought ground lamb at the farmers market Saturday so am all set to fire up my grill. Glazing with fig jam is genius.

T.W. Barritt at Culinary Types said...

OK, these are the ultimate. I love lamb, but the cheese, the fig glaze and the towering buns!!!! Oh, my is right!

Pam said...

Oh my is right! This burger looks FANTASTIC!

The Short (dis)Order Cook said...

I love those blog and I love figs! I also love lamb. What a great combination. I'm really wanting one of these burgers.

Joanne said...

I saw these on The Bitten Word and absolutely SWOONED. Lamb is a serious favorite of mine. I will definitely be trying these!

Patti (aka Mint) said...

Excuse me while I wipe the drool from my chin. I can't decide if it was your amazing photo or the mention of feta that had me drooling. Those look absolutely DELICIOUS! I love lamb but it's not in the budget so I'm going to give this a try with chicken. Now to think of a way to let hubby let me man the grill so he doesn't know about the fig jam.

Kim said...

Debbie - That is one serious burger!! Whew! I'm loving it and I know I can handle it - LOL
I do enjoy lamb and can see how all these flavors would pair well together. I need to get my hands on some fig jam right away:)

Monica H said...

Hold the onion, give me a slice or two of thick cut smokey bacon and I'm in. Extra spicanch for me please! This looks amazing!

Cheryl said...

Everything you make just sounds and looks soo good, this included! YUM

WizzyTheStick said...

Jam over burgers? I'll admit I was skeptical and then I saw your pictures. SOLD!!!!

Jen_from_NJ said...

Great idea to mix the lamb with the veal since the lamb can be a little strongly flavored! The fig glaze, onion jam, and melted feta are just icing on the cake! Mmmmmm... yum....

Muneeba said...

Ohhhhhhh Debby ... I'm salivating ... I'd pay big bucks for this burger if I saw it on a menu in a restaurant somewhere in NYC!

bella said...

I don't eat a lot of lamb, but these look fabulous. Just had macadamia crusted lamb chops last night at Alan Wong's in Honolulu and they were over the top delish! Don't hear much from ya lately and hope you're doin' fine! Love, Roz

Salsa Verde said...

Amazing combination of flavours and textures!
Cheers,
Lia.

Val said...

This looks out of this world amazing.

Karen said...

That burger looks (and sounds) amazing - love the cheese oozing out of there!

Pauline said...

Woman, that truly IS a feast for the eyes. If I could, I'd reach through the screen and snatch it right off the plate. These sound absolutely fantasmic. The fact that they're STUFFED with sundried tomato feta and glazed with this beautiful fig jam makes it sound like a tasting experience like no other. Beautiful beautiful beautiful

Foodycat said...

Wow! What a burger! I love lamb, so I think I would make it all lamb. I definitely have to try these.