My Big Fat Greco-Inspired Burgers
Tzatziki with Feta
- 1 small cucumber, peeled, seeded, and chopped
- 1 1/2 cups plain yogurt
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh dill
- 1/2 cup crumbled Greek feta cheese
- 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 large eggplant, sliced into rounds 1/2-inch thick
- 2 pounds ground lamb
- 3/4 cup chopped fresh mint leaves
- 1 1/2 tablespoons ground cumin
- Freshly ground black pepper
- vegetable oil, for brushing on the grill rack
- 6 small pita breads, halved horizontally
- 3 cups chopped Romaine lettuce
- To make the tzatziki, combine all of the ingredients in a bowl and mix well. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.
- Prepare a medium-hot fire in a charcoal grill with a cover, or preheat a gas grill to medium-high.
- To make the grilled eggplant, combine the vinegar, oregano, salt, and pepper in a small bowl and then whisk in the oil until the mixture is thick and well-blended. Arrange the eggplant slices in a 9 by 13-inch baking dish, pour the dressing over, and turn the eggplant to coat well. Set aside.
- To make the patties, combine the lamb, mint, and cumin, in a large bowl and season with salt and pepper. Handling the meat as little as possible to avoid compacting it, mix well. Divide the mixture into 6 equal portions and form the portions into patties to fit the pita breads.
- When the grill is ready, brush the grill rack with vegetable oil. Place the patties on the rack, cover, and cook, turning once, just until done, about 4 minutes on each side for medium-rare. Grill the eggplant slices until tender, about 3 minutes on each side. During the last few minutes of cooking, place the pita breads, cut side down, on the outer edges of the rack to toast lightly.
- To assemble the burgers, on each bread bottom, place 1/2 cup lettuce, a patty, an equal portion of the tzatziki, and an eggplant slice. Add the bread tops and serve.