Spicy Lamb Burgers

These burgers have been on my family’s dinner menu all spring. Easy to make but special enough for company, I love serving them with a simple Greek salad and lots of yummy condiments (see list below). I don't always have all of the condiments ready to go in the fridge and there have been times that I have resorted to just plain ketchup & mustard. I can confidently say that whatever you top these burgers with, they will be delicious.

My secret for great flavour on the barbecue is charcoal. Not briquettes, but real wood charcoal. It can be a little harder to find, but it's worth the effort. Many people consider it a crazy waste of time to start a charcoal barbecue every time you want to grill something, but I completely disagree. With the chimneys that are available for starting the charcoal, the grill can be hot and ready in about 30 minutes. If you were presented with the choice of eating something grilled over charcoal or over propane gas, what would you honestly choose?
Grilled Lamb Burgers
Serves 4.

1 pound ground lamb
½ cup cooked rice (basmati or brown basmati are my favourites)
1/3 cup finely diced red onion
2 Tbsp finely chopped parsley
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
½ tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp fine sea salt
½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
4 pitas or burger buns

Combine all of the ingredients together in a large bowl. Form into four even-sized patties and refrigerate until ready to cook.
Heat the barbecue to at least 300F. Grill the burgers until cooked through, about 4-5 minutes per side. Toast the pitas or buns until golden.
Serve with a selection of condiments.

Ideas for topping Lamb Burgers

red onions
green or red leaf lettuce
feta cheese
goat cheese
pickled beets
tahini sauce


Rhubarb Sauce

The rhubarb in my garden has really taken off this year. I have been making all sorts of rhubarb-y desserts... cakes, pies, muffins, etc. I have even experimented with a rhubarb custard ice cream, but I think one more batch will be necessary in order to perfect this frozen delight!

With extra rhubarb leftover, I remembered the stewed rhubarb that my Mom used to make every spring. We used to love it and I wondered if my kids would feel the same way. I whipped up this sauce in just over 10 minutes and it was so good. Ellen, who is now 5, loved it. Gavin, at an argumentative 7 1/2 years of age, wouldn't touch it.

It crossed my mind that using orange juice or zest in this recipe would probably be a creative way to go. But I just don't agree that orange would make this any better than it is. The rhubarb is so full of it's own flavour, why mess with perfection?

Rhubarb Sauce

4 cups rhubarb
1 cup granulated sugar
2 Tbsp water

Slice the rhubarb into 1/2-inch (1 cm) pieces. Place all of the ingredients into a large saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for about 10 minutes.