Spicy lamb patties with a caramelised onion and sweet pepper relish and mint and cucumber yoghurt

It’s Valentines day! But as we went out Saturday night to celebrate instead and I managed to eat and drink my weight in food and alcohol, we’re not eating out or cooking anything too OTT and fatty (it’s only a Tuesday!).

Nothing is more romantic then sharing delicious food and using your hands to eat it with. Forget a plated steak dinner, make a platter of gorgeous, spicy, taste-bud tantalising food – delish!

This is a great dish for any night, perfect for evenings in front of a good movie or with some good conversation and music. Open the wine and enjoy!

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Recipe (Serves 4)

500g lamb mince

1 small red onion, finely chopped 

1 large garlic clove, crushed

1 inch ginger, grated

1 red chilli, chopped

1/2 tsp turmeric

1 tsp cumin

2 tbsp honey

salt and pepper

For the pepper and onion relish:

2 sweet peppers (I used sweet Mirabella peppers, yellow and red), sliced

1 large onion, sliced

3 cloves garlic, sliced

1/2 tsp dried red chilli flakes

2 tbsp good olive oil

1 tsp sugar

salt and pepper

50ml water

For the mint and cucumber yoghurt:

4 tbsp natural or Greek yoghurt

1 small red onion, finely sliced

1/2 cucumber, grated and water squeezed out

1/2 tomato, deseeded and chopped into small chunks

1 tbsp mint sauce

1 lemon, juiced

salt and pepper

To serve:

8 small pitta breads

Mix the lamb mince, red onion, garlic, ginger, chilli, turmeric, cumin, honey and some salt pepper in a bowl. Use your hands and mix well so thoroughly combined.

Pour the mix out onto a surface and form into a cake. Slice into 8 equal pieces and form into patties. Put onto a plate and into the fridge and leave to chill for at least 30 minutes.

Next, for the pepper and onion relish, heat the olive oil in a frying pan on a low heat and add the peppers, onion, sliced garlic, red chilli flakes, some salt and pepper and sugar. Cook for 10 minutes so it’s started to soften and turn a golden, light brown. Add the water, let it bubble and cook again for a further 10-15 minutes until it’s very soft and ‘relish’ like. You can leave this if you want to serve it room temperature/slightly warm or re-heat to have hot.

Next for the yoghurt sauce, mix the yoghurt, grated and squeezed cucumber, finely diced onion, tomato chunks, lemon juice, mint sauce and some salt and pepper. Put into a serving bowl and leave in the fridge until needed.

When you’re ready to cook the lamb patties, brush each pattie with a little oil and cook on a griddle pan for about 5 – 7 minutes, turning half way, until brown and golden but tender and just cooked on the inside- you want to keep them juicy! Remove from the pan and let them rest on a plate for a few minutes.

To serve, warm up the pitta breads in the oven or microwave, slice the top open to create a pocket and serve alongside the patties, pepper and onion relish and the yoghurt sauce.

To eat pile it all into the pitta and enjoy!

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