Best-ever burgers with spiced onions

Best-ever burgers with spiced onions

By
From
I Love India
Makes
5-6
Photographer
Martin Poole

Indians cook a lot of kebabs, often highly spiced and flavoured from the inside so you need little with it. A burger, though, is quite different. The elements that go with the burger are almost as important as the meat itself to a perfect, sense-satisfying end. This burger has those qualities, the burger itself is lightly flavoured, the onions add sweetness, bite and a little flavoured crunch from the seeds, while the roasted chilli yogurt brings creamy, spicy moreishness which makes them hard to put down. A really great, grown-up burger, these will soon become a favourite.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient

For the burgers

Quantity Ingredient
450g minced beef or lamb, with some fat on it
1 red onion, finely chopped
10g finely chopped root ginger, (peeled weight)
2 large garlic cloves, finely grated
3/4 teaspoon see method for ingredients, (fresh if possible)
1 egg
salt
freshly ground black pepper
5-6 burger buns or baps
1 large tomato, sliced crossways

For the roasted green chilli yogurt

Quantity Ingredient
3 large green chillies, stalks removed, pierced with the tip of a knife
2 rounded tablespoons thick greek yogurt
2 tablespoons creme fraiche or mayonnaise
good handful chopped coriander

For the spiced caramelized onions

Quantity Ingredient
11/2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 teaspoon panch phoran
2 red onions, thinly sliced

Method

  1. Mix together all the ingredients for the burgers (except the buns and sliced tomato), season with 1¼–1½ tsp salt and leave to rest for 30 minutes.
  2. You can either cook the chillies on the barbecue later, or do them in a frying or griddle pan in advance. Wherever you cook them, place them directly on the hot surface and cook, turning once the underside has charred and blistered. Once they are done, wrap in cling film and set aside.
  3. Heat the oil for the onions in a frying pan and, once hot, add the panch phoran. Cook for 20–30 seconds, or until the seeds are popping and colouring. Add the onions and a good pinch of salt and cook over a high heat until they have coloured and are well browned on the edges, 5–7 minutes. Adjust the seasoning and set aside. (You can reheat these on the barbecue later in a flameproof pan, or keep them warm in a low oven.)
  4. Mix together the yogurt, mayonnaise and coriander for the topping, adding a good grinding of black pepper and salt lightly. Once the chillies are cool, peel off their skins, slit lengthways and deseed; discard the seeds. Then chop the flesh up and add to the yogurt. Set aside.
  5. When you are ready to barbecue, make 5–6 large patties out of the minced meat mixture, remembering to make a little flat indent in the centre lightly with your fingers; this will help them cook evenly and not puff up in the middle. Preheat the barbecue.
  6. Place on the hottest part of the grill and cook for 4–5 minutes, or until a little crisp and charred, then turn over and cook for another 1–2 minutes. Place 1 slice of the tomato on the base of each bun, top with a burger, a generous dollop of the yogurt, which should start oozing with the heat, and some onions. Place on the lid and eat immediately.
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