For the Raita
1 cup plain yogurt - I used non-fat yogurt but whole-milk yogurt might be better
3 tablespoons fresh mint, chopped finely
2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, also chopped finely
1¼ teaspoons finely grated lime peel
coarse salt, like Kosher or sea salt
For the Lamb Burgers & Vegetable Toppings
2 tablespoons olive oil
1¼ cups yellow onion, chopped fine
2 tablespoons fresh ginger, peeled and minced fine
Salt & fresh ground black pepper, to taste
2 teaspoons homemade Garam Masala or Madras curry powder
1¾ pounds of ground lamb (look for domestic lamb if you can find it)
3 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped fine
3 medium sized zucchini, cut into
¼ inch thick slices lengthwise
6 scallions (green onions)
6 pita breads or if you can find them, Indian flatbread called naan
1 tomato, thinly sliced
For the Raita
Mix the yogurt, mint, cilantro and lime peep in a bowl, season with salt and pepper, to taste and then cover it and stick it into the refrigerator to chill.
For the Burgers
Getting your burgers and toppings won't take long so get your grill going especially if using a charcoal grill that takes a while to get to get started. You will be cooking at a medium high temperature.
Take the lamb out of the refrigerator while you prepare the curried onions and ginger. You don't want to work or grill cold chopped meat.
In a medium sized sauté pan or fry pan, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil until hot. Add the onions, ginger and season with a little salt. When the onions are soft, about 8 minutes, add the Garam Masala or curry powder, stir for 30 seconds and remove from heat. Let this mixture cool to room temperature.
In a large mixing bowl, combine the lamb and onion mixture. Add the cilantro and a little salt and pepper. Don't overwork the meat too much. Gently combine all the ingredients and make six ½-inch thick lamb burgers.
Place the sliced zucchini and scallions into a bowl and add 2 tablespoons of olive oil along with ½ teaspoon of salt and ½ teaspoon of fresh ground black pepper. Toss to coat.
Place the vegetables on the grill. I like using one of those grilling baskets or grates so the vegetables don't fall through. Use a pair of tongs for turning the vegetables. On the other side of the grill, start your burgers. Cook for about 4 minutes until you start seeing grill marks and then flip with a spatula and cook on this side for another 4 minutes for medium-rare, longer for medium.
Remove the vegetables and lamb burgers from the grill and plate. Cut the zucchini and scallions into 2 inch pieces. You can serve this family style and let your friends and/or family put together their own burgers or do it for them.
If you put them together yourself and then serve them, here's what I do. If using pita bread, I like to carefully make a pocket in the bread, slip in a tomato slice, then the burger, spoon some grilled veggies on top and then a little of the Raita sauce.
If you found some Indian flatbread (called naan and usually about 6 inches long), spread some raita sauce on the bread, add the lamb burger, top with grilled vegetables and finish with a slice of tomato. Fold in half and serve.
If you have never prepared lamb burgers, I highly recommend you try this recipe. Some of the ingredients may sound overpowering but when combined, they are not. My kids don't eat curry and they didn't think they would like lamb in burger form but they all asked for seconds. Even my daughter's friend Olivia who was over for dinner enjoyed her lamb burger.
Give them a try. They are as Good As It Gets!