Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Losh Kebab – Jazzed-up Armenian Hamburgers for an American Holiday

It’s summertime which, in South Florida means the rainy season – and travel time. Power outages are common during this time of year, and if it stays out for a long period, we certainly don’t want our frozen foods to perish. So, we use up all of our frozen foods down to the last package of ground lamb, and keep plenty of canned goods handy because you just never know.

Our recipe of choice for the last package of frozen ground lamb is losh kebab – an Armenian hamburger which is much like lule kebab except that it’s shaped like a hamburger rather than a sausage. Served with your favorite side dishes, it’s a meal worthy of a celebration, such as the Fourth of July!
Losh kebab with bulgur pilaf, salad, and yogurt sauce
Losh Kebab
Makes 4-5 generous burgers

1 1/4 lb. ground lamb
¼ cup finely chopped onion
1/4 cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
1/4 cup plain dry bread crumbs
1 egg, beaten
1 Tbsp. red pepper paste (1 Tbsp. tomato paste and 1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper can be substituted)
½ tsp. ground coriander
½ tsp. allspice
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1/4 tsp. Aleppo red pepper


1. In a small mixing bowl, combine the beaten egg, red pepper (or tomato) paste, and seasonings. Blend well. Set aside.
 2. Place meat, onions, parsley, and bread crumbs in a large mixing bowl. Using your hands, mix well. Add the egg mixture to the meat, mixing well until all ingredients are well-blended. (NOTE: If you’re squeamish about handling raw meat and egg, you may want to wear non-powdered, sterile latex, non-latex, or vinyl gloves for this step.)
3. Shape into 4 or 5 good-sized patties.
4. These can be grilled, broiled, or pan-fried to your preferred degree of doneness.
5. Serve with or without your choice of bread and your favorite side dishes.
 Optional toppings for the losh kebab served in a bun: sliced tomato, onion, lettuce, * yogurt-garlic sauce, etc.

*Yogurt-Garlic Sauce
16 oz. plain yogurt
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons lemon juice
salt to taste

1. In a small mixing bowl, combine yogurt, lemon juice, garlic, and salt. Mix well.
2. Chill until ready to serve, allowing flavors to blend. Can be refrigerated for up to 5 days.
NOTE: If you want a thicker sauce, use Greek yogurt or labne - or - line a strainer with cheesecloth or coffee filters. Place the strainer over a bowl. Pour the yogurt into the lined strainer and place all in the refrigerator for several hours or overnight. Discard the excess liquid that collected in the bowl, and place the thickened yogurt in a separate storage container. Keep refrigerated until ready to use.

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