Salty haloumi and caramelised capsicum is a dream combination in any situation, but especially in burger form.
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 250 g (9 oz) haloumi, coarsely grated
- 150 g (5½ oz) sweet potato, coarsely grated
- 150 g (5½ oz) zucchini (courgettes), coarsely grated and squeezed to remove excess moisture
- 2 tbsp finely chopped mint
- 2 tbsp finely chopped flat-leaf (Italian) parsley
- 1 lemon, zested
- 1 large egg
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 cloves garlic, finely sliced
- ½ tsp dried chilli flakes
- 1 small red onion, finely sliced
- 2 red capsicums (bell peppers), sliced into 1 cm (½ in) strips
- ¼ tsp sea salt flakes
- ½ tsp soft brown sugar
- 4 wholegrain burger buns, split
- 1 large handful baby spinach or lettuce leaves
- 1 large tomato, sliced
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Resting time: 30 minutes
1. Heat the olive oil in a small frying pan over medium heat. Fry the sweet potato for 4–5 minutes until cooked and just beginning to caramelise. Set aside to cool.
2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the haloumi, sweet potato, zucchini, mint, parsley, lemon zest and egg.
Divide the mixture into four equal portions and, using wet hands, shape into patties. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to firm.
3. To make the peperonata, heat the olive oil in a medium-sized frying pan over medium heat. Add the garlic and chilli flakes, and cook gently for 1 minute. Add the onion and capsicum and cook, stirring frequently, for 15 minutes or until softened and beginning to caramelise. Add the salt and sugar and cook for a further 2 minutes.
4. Heat a barbecue hotplate (griddle) to medium and lightly grease with oil.
5. Brush or spray the burgers lightly with olive oil. Cook on the hotplate for 3–4 minutes on each side until golden brown, using a barbecue spatula to gently turn the burgers.
6. Toast the burger buns lightly on each side, then assemble each with baby spinach or lettuce, tomato, a burger patty and the peperonata.
Recipe from Feed The Man Meat (Smith Street Books).