Monthly Archives: August 2014


Labor Day Recipe: Lamb Burger With Brie & Spicy Sriracha Mayo

lamb burger sriracha mayoWe’re only a couple of days away from the holiday weekend, and chances are that in between your spreadsheets, documents, files and forms, you’re Pinterest-ing away for some delicious grilling and cookout recipes. To help you out, we’ve come up with an incredible lamb burger recipe, developed right here at the Gourmet Food Store kitchens! We’re big fans of flavorful lamb meat, with its bold taste and always-juicy texture. Plus, it’s healthy! Lamb is primarily grass-fed, which means the meat is higher in healthy Omega-3 fatty acids than grain-fed beef.

Start with premium quality ground lamb meat, like Broadleaf’s New Zealand grass-fed lamb, raised in a healthy natural environment in family-run farms (you can find it at at $8.23 per lb.).

After you’ve done your shopping, there are a few tricks to learn to grill up the perfect lamb burger, so read on!

First, mix all the ingredients with the lamb meat well, but gently. You don’t want to give it a Swedish massage, but you want the mix to be dense enough that it will hold its shape during cooking and won’t fall apart on the grill. We also used grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese in our mix, not only to add flavor, but also because it helps hold the mix together as it melts. Another tip? Creating a small indentation or dimple with your thumb in the middle of the patty also helps to keep the shape of the burger (otherwise you’ll end up with a puffy ball).

When grilling, always stay away from open flames to avoid flare-ups. You’ll want coals only and a two-zone grill to cook these lamb burgers to perfection. Lamb meat has some great fat in it that needs to be melted to be enjoyable, so you really don’t want “rare” lamb burgers. That being said, nobody likes a charred, overcooked burger, so aim for medium or medium-rare when cooking lamb burgers. The Internal cooking temperatures for lamb are:  125°F for medium-rare and 135°F for medium.

Rather than going for the traditional doughy burger bun, opt for brioche bread. This enriched French-style bread is perfect for hamburgers. Light but firm, buttery and a bit sweet, it complements the rich flavors of the meat wonderfully.

Finally, go light on the condiments. You don’t want to overwhelm that great, complex flavor that is so particular to lamb meat by over-seasoning it or over-spicing it. We went with some onions and salty capers, and then mixed up a spicy Sriracha mayo to add some zest. A few slices of gooey Brie, and you’ve got the ultimate gourmet burger for your (almost) final summer grilling event this weekend!

Rest, relax and eat! Happy Labor Day!

Lamb Burger With Brie & Spicy Sriracha Mayo Recipe

Rating: 51

Yield: 4 burgers

Lamb Burger With Brie & Spicy Sriracha Mayo Recipe


  • 30 oz. ground lamb meat
  • 2 oz. grated Parmigiano Reggiano
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 4 tbsp. Capers, chopped
  • 2 or 3 tbsps. Extra Virgin olive oil
  • 8 slices of brioche bread
  • 7 oz. Brie
  • 2 cups baby greens
  • 2 tomatoes, sliced
  • 1 red onion, sliced into thin rings
  • 5 tbsps. Mayonnaise
  • 1 or 2 tbsps. Sriracha sauce
  • Salt and pepper to taste


  1. Using your hands, gently mix the lamb meat with the Parmigiano cheese, onion, capers, salt and pepper. Mix well so that the ingredients will mix fully. This will make the patties keep their shape better during cooking.
  2. Divide in 4 parts and form 4 disc-shaped patties. Wrap each individual patties in film and reserve in the fridge.
  3. Mix the mayo with the Sriracha, whisking until fully blended. Reserve in the fridge.
  4. Cut the brioche in half and brush with olive oil. Toast in the oven, flipping them so that they’re evenly toasted on both sides. If you want to use your toaster, toast first, then brush with olive oil.
  5. While the bread is toasting, start grilling your burgers.
  6. Heat up your grill to medium, and make sure your coals are distributed evenly. You don’t want a direct open flame.
  7. Brush the burgers with extra virgin olive oil, and grill about 5 minutes on each side. If you have an instant-read thermometer, lamb is medium-rare at 125°F, and medium at 135°F. Let burgers rest outside the grill for at last 2 minutes before serving, so that the juices have time to redistribute.
  8. Just before the lamb burgers are done, cut the brioche in half and brush with olive oil, then toast them over the grill, flipping once so that they’re evenly toasted on both sides. Alternative: If you want to use your toaster, toast first, then brush with olive oil.
  9. Spread the Sriracha mayo on each side of the bread; place a few greens, the red onions, a slice of tomatoes, and the burger, finishing with a slice of Brie and a few more greens.
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The Essentials To A Spanish Tapas Menu

spanish tapas menu


The concept of “tapas” is quintessentially Spanish and is truly a reflection of the supremely social culture of Spain, whose people just love gatherings and celebrations of any type.  

The “tapeo” consists of a selection of easy-to-eat savory dishes, much like appetizers are used in America. But rather as an opening act to the main dishes, these hearty and delicious small dishes are the star of meal.

Eaten by hand or with small forks, and consisting of mostly premium cured meats like Ibérico ham and sausages like chorizo, cheeses, olives, anchovies, pickled peppers, nuts and some classic prepared dishes like Patatas Bravas and Gambas al Ajillo, the idea of Spanish tapas is to reduce the effort in the kitchen in order to spend more time actually eating and talking.  With the bounty of superb Spanish foods widely available today, hosting a tapas party this summer is as easy as stocking up on some essentials – including a fine bottle of Spanish wine.


Spanish Hams

Buttery and succulent Spanish hams are some of the best (and for some, THE best) in the world, and a must-have for any Spanish tapas party worthy of its name.

spanish tapas menus

Serrano ham: Serrano comes from a breed of Spanish white pigs, raised under stringent standards of quality and dry-cured for at least a year in a pristine mountainous area. The result is a rich and firm ham, salty but buttery that’s always found in a Spanish tapas spread.

Jamon Ibérico: The crème de la crème of hams, the words “Jamón Ibérico” makes any foodie’s mouth start watering. Ibérico ham comes exclusively from black-hoofed pigs called Pata Negra, with a privileged genetic that makes their meat richer in delicious intramuscular fat (the same high-quality fat that gives Kobe beef breeds their characteristic flavor), and thus more flavorful and juicier than any other. But If you really want to step up your Spanish tapas game, you’ll want to go for “Iberico de Bellota ham, which comes from Iberico pigs that have been allowed to graze in an area rich in oak tress, called the Dehesa. The pigs eat the oil-rich acorns, giving the meat a distinctive oilier and nuttier flavor – and for some, making it best in the world.

How To Serve:  paper-thin slices, arranged on a small plate.

Click here to buy Spanish Meats >


Spanish Cheeses


Machego cheese: The Spanish tapas cheese by choice and excellence, Manchego is a sheep’s milk cheese, which comes from La Mancha (the famous region where the mythical Don Quixote chased his windmills). A national treasure, Manchego falls under the PDO standards, which means its origin and production is controlled and protected to ensure that any and all Manchego cheeses are always equally excellent.  The flavor and texture of Manchego can vary as it ages, from a supple and buttery young Manchego, to a hard and salty aged version (usually 6-12 months).  Grassy, nutty, with notes of hay, getting more caramelized as it ages.

How To Serve: Cut out 1/4 –inch wedges and remove the rind, which is inedible. Arrange on a plate and drizzle with olive oil. As an alternative:  place a thin slice of Serrano ham over the wedge of Manchego,

Alternatives:Garrotxa: An artisanal goat cheese produced in small farms on the Catalonian region of Northern Spain; Romao: This cheese gets its complex flavor from being made with rosemary and being rubbed with olive oil. Made from sheep’s milk and a distant relative of Parmesan; Smoked Idiazabal: from Basque Country, a firm sheep’s milk cheese lightly smoked; Mahon: from the island of Menorca, a sharp cow’s milk cheese with fruity notes and an orange rind.

Click here to buy Spanish cheeses >


Spanish Chorizo


A classic of the tapeo, Spanish chorizo is made of pork and cured with smoked paprika (pimentón in Spanish) and salt. It can be spicy (picante) or sweet (dulce), which just depends on how much pimento has been used. However, keep in mind that a lot of different regions in Spain have their own versions of chorizo. Chorizo Cantimpalo for example, is made using Pimentón de la Vera, a special smoked paprika that comes from La Vera:

How To Serve: For your Spanish tapas party, you must have chorizo! Just slice the chorizo and sauté with a few tablespoons of olive oil, tossing until the chorizo is crispy.

Click here to buy Spanish Chorizo >


Marcona Almonds


A sprinkle of almonds is a great and easy idea for Spanish tapas, especially when you serve up some plump Marconas. Spain is the only producer of this unique almond; round, sweet and with very low bitterness, the Marcona is grown in the Mediterranean coast of Spain.  Lightly fried and salted, Marcona almonds make a crunchy and delicious tapas treat that goes perfectly with a cold beer.

Other options: Largueta almonds.

How to serve: serve in small bowls or sprinkle around the cured meat and cheese board.

Click here to buy Spanish Marcona Almonds >


Spanish Tortilla


Not to be confused with a flat, corn Mexican tortilla!, a Spanish Tortilla or Tortilla Española, is a dish that’s made with potatoes and eggs, like a very oversized potato omelet. It’s hearty, sturdy (if made properly), and incredibly delicious. A version of a Tortilla de Patatas is found at almost every restaurant and street corner bar in Spain, so it’s a must for an authentic tapas party. Add some sliced chorizo to the egg-and-potato for added spiciness and supercharged flavor.

How to serve: cut into bite-sized pieces to are eaten with by hand (perfect to hold a glass of Tempranillo wine on the other).

Click here to buy Smoked Paprika (Pimenton de la Vera) for your Spanish Tortilla! >




Spain has a wealth of olive groves, kissed by the salty air of the Mediterranean Sea. The variety of olives that it offers is astounding, like hojiblanca, arbequina, sevillano, manzanillas, amongst many others. So it’s really not surprising that a colorful array of olives are found in small bowls at any tapas party, sometimes right out of the jar, and sometimes marinated in extra virgin olive oil, garlic, sea salt and pretty much anything you can think of.

How to serve: serve a few varieties of Spanish olives in small earthenware bowls, plus add a few here and there with the plates of cured meats and cheeses.

Click here to buy Spanish Merula Extra Virgin Olive Oil >


Gambas Al Ajillo


A quick and easy disk of garlic shrimp, Gambas Al Ajillo is one of the most classic of tapas dishes. Essentially, the dish is made with fresh shrimp that’s been sautéed in garlic, olive oil, and sherry or brandy, then seasoned with a smoked paprika (although season can vary from recipe to recipe). Delicious!

How to serve: in a small bowl, with lots of the garlic sauce it’s been cooked in and some crusty bread to soak it up.


Do you have a favorite tapas recipe? Share it with us in the comments!