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Geoffrey Smeddle's cumin and lamb burgers recipe

Geoffrey Smeddle's cumin and lamb burgers recipe

8 ratings

These heavenly lamb burgers by Geoffrey Smeddle are a culinary adventure to the Middle East, wonderfully topped off with a refreshing yogurt sauce and served in pitta breads. See method

  • Makes 8 stuffed pittas
  • 25 minutes preparation time, 20 minutes cooking time plus 1hr chilling time
  • 421 calories / serving


For the lamb burgers

  • 900g (1 3/4lb) lean minced lamb
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 red onion, grated
  • ¼ tsp ground turmeric
  • ½ tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds, crushed
  • 1 piece fresh ginger, 3cm long, peeled and grated
  • 1 red chilli, de-seeded and finely chopped
  • 2 tsp fresh mint leaves, chopped
  • 2 tsp chopped coriander
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 pinch of pepper

For the yogurt sauce

  • 1/2 cucumber, grated
  • 300g (10oz) low fat natural yogurt
  • 1 large ripe tomato, chopped
  • 1 tbsp fresh coriander, chopped
  • 1 tbsp fresh mint, chopped

To serve

  • 8 wholemeal pitta breads
If you don't have red onions, try using white, brown or spring onions

Each serving contains

  • Energy

  • Fat

    17g 25%
  • Saturates

    8g 38%
  • Sugars

    5g 6%
  • Salt

    0.4g 7%

of the reference intake
Carbohydrate 271.4g Protein 32g Fibre 4.8g


  1. Place the lean lamb mince, onion, ground turmeric, ground cumin, fennel seeds, ginger, red chilli, salt and pepper into a large mixing bowl and use your hands to combine – your little helpers can easily get involved in this step, just make sure they wash their hands before and after getting stuck in
  2. Add the mint leaves, chopped coriander and egg yolks and mix again until incorporated. To test if the burger mix is well-seasoned enough, fry a small lump of the mix in a pan and taste. If needed, add more salt and pepper.
  3. Split the mixture into 8 equal balls then shape into patties. Once you’ve shown them how to shape one burger, the kids should be able to make the rest themselves.
  4. Line a baking tray with cling film and use oil to lightly grease the surface. Lay the patties on top and leave to firm up in the fridge for at least an hour- this will make them less likely to break during cooking.
  5. Preheat the oven to gas 6, 200˚C, fan 180˚C.
  6. Remove from the fridge and line another baking tray with foil. Preheat the grill and place the burgers under a high heat for a minute or 2 on each side to brown. Transfer the burgers to the oven and continue to cook through for 10 minutes.
  7. Meanwhile, tightly squeeze out the grated cucumber to get rid of the moisture. Mix with the low-fat natural yogurt, tomato, fresh coriander and mint in a bowl and get the kids to give the mix a good stir.
  8. Cut the top off the pitta breads and open each one. Remove the burgers from the oven and place inside the pitta with the yogurt sauce and serve.

See more Lamb recipes

For top tips on protecting you and your family when preparing raw meat and poultry, visit Food Safety in the Home.

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