6 October 2014

Harissa lamb burgers with homemade guacamole and sweet potato wedges

HARISSA IS AN aromatic, hot paste made from chillies, garlic, oil, coriander and spices. It's commonly used in North African cooking, and, for me, is a real store cupboard essential.  You can't beat handmade burgers, so give this easy recipe a bash.

I make a quick, no fuss guacamole to accompany the spicy lamb, as I love the cool contrast it brings to the burger.  As with most burger recipes, this can easily be turned into a meatball mix for a cracking lamb tagine.

Ingredients (serves 2):

350g lamb mince
1 small tin (142ml), harissa (available in most supermarkets)
1 tsp ground cumin
Good pinch of salt
Pinch of white pepper
For the guacamole:

1 ready to eat avocado
Juice of one lime
Half a red onion, diced very finely
Bunch of coriander, chopped
1 red chilli, finely chopped
Sea salt

For the sweet potato wedges:

1x large sweet potato
1 tsp smoked paprika
Sea salt
Rapeseed oil

Natural yogurt
Bunch of mint, roughly chopped
Lettuce (I used gem lettuce)
Tomato, sliced 
2x burger buns


Method:

1) Turn oven on to 200C (Mark 7), and the grill to a semi-high heat.  Mix all the burger ingredients together in a bowl, shape into desired patties and place in the fridge for at least 20 minutes.  If you have time, make the night before to really allow those flavours to develop.

2) Slice up the sweet potato into even sized wedges, place in a large bowl.  Mix the smoked paprika, salt and oil together, and then coat the wedges.  Place on the top shelf for 18-20 mins, until soft inside and crispy outside. 

3) Meanwhile, get the burgers under the grill for 12-15 mins, turning half way through.  Tip: to check if they are cooked, insert a small knife or metal skewer into the middle of the burgers for a few seconds, then place on your top lip.  If it's hot, the burgers are cooked.

4) Scoop out the avocado flesh and place in a food processor with the rest of the ingredients.  Pulse until all ingredients come together.  I kept mine deliberately chunky, but feel free to blitz to a smoother texture.

5) Once the burgers are ready, allow a few minutes resting time.  Toast your burger buns under the grill.  Mix the chopped mint with the yoghurt, and add a pinch of salt. Remove wedges from the oven.

6) To plate, place a couple of lettuce leaves and slices of tomato on the bun, then spoon on some of the guacamole.  Stack the wedges on the plate and place a good dollop of the minty yogurt 









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