“A man when he is making up to anybody can be cordial and gallant and full of little attentions and altogether charming. But when a man is really in love he can’t help looking like a sheep.”― Agatha Christie, The Mystery of the Blue Train
We are so lucky in central Idaho to have access to amazing local meat providers. At Atkinsons’ Markets they feature Lava Lake Ranch lamb. This recipe highlights the quality of the lamb, it’s mild flavor, wonderful texture, and great juicy burger meat. Allow yourself to be impressed by this quick and delicious weeknight burger. This recipe was inspired by Hart’s lamb burger. Follow the link for a great How To video if you would like to be inspired by the chef himself, Nick Perkins.
The original recipe calls for a homemade aioli. Now, I love to make aioli and pride myself on a great little recipe (which I will post in the future). However, if you are making this burger on a weeknight, why not cut a corner? My trick is the Stonewall Kitchen Lemon Herb Ailoi. Simply add chopped capers and a perhaps an extra squeeze of fresh lemon juice and voila you have a doctored aioli in less than a minute.
Along with the Lave Lake lamb, I chose local Bigwood Bread Co. Challah buns. They are my favorite Bigwood Bread product and have a wonderful sweetness that pairs nicely with the fennel salad in the burger. I toast the Challah buns to create a bit more sturdiness to the burger. Do not be fooled. This is a messy burger, which is one more reason to love burger night in the comfort of your own home.
- 1/4 Cup capers, rinsed
- 1 Cup Stonewall Kitchen Lemon Ailoi
- Squeeze of lemon
- Burger Assembly
- 1 1/2 lb grass fed ground lamb, preferably local *room temperature
- Sea salt
- 4 Tbsp olive oil, divided
- 3 celery stalks
- 1/2 fennel bulb, thinly sliced + fronds chopped
- 1/4 onion, any variety thinly sliced
- Juice of one lemon
- Fresh mint
- 4 Bigwood Bread Challah Buns
- White Anchovies packed in oil, such as Ortiz
- 1 tsp Dijon mustard
Local Lamb Burger
55 Minutes Cook Time
- Ad Stonewall Kitchen Aioli to small bowl. Drain capers & roughly chop. Mix in capers to aioli. Season with salt and a squeeze of lemon juice, if desired.
- Do Ahead: Aioli can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and chill.
- Shape lamb into 4 patties about 1″ thick, and make a small depression in the middle of the burger. This ensures the burger is cooked evenly all the way through the patty. Season generously with sea salt, and let sit at room temperature 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, toss celery, fennel + fronds, onion, lemon juice, mint, and remaining 2 Tbsp. oil in a medium bowl. Season with salt and pepper.
- Heat 2 Tbsp. oil in a large skillet, ideally cast iron, over medium. Oil will be shiny but not smoking. Working in batches if needed, cook lamb patties, until browned. Once in the pan, do not move patties around. Let sit and brown nicely on the first side (those crispy brown bits hold all the flavor and keep the burger juicy), about 5–7 minutes on the first side. Flip and cook until browned on second side, another 5 minutes for medium-rare. Transfer patties to a plate and let rest 10 minutes.
- Slice in half and place Challah buns on a baking sheet. Drizzle with a little olive oil. Broil to toast to golden brown, about 1-2 minutes. Keep a keen eye on the buns to make sure they don’t burn!
- Generously spread aioli & dijon on cut sides of buns. Build each burger with a lamb patty, 3 or 4 anchovies, and a mound of slaw. Serve immediately with a fresh green salad or gourmet potato chips. Enjoy your Idaho Lamb Burger!