Thursday 6 November 2008


You can blame Nigel Slater, not in a bad way of course, but he is definitely to blame. I remember reading about lemon, Dijon mustard, and honey as a good combination for grilling chicken in Appetite (I think). I added some thyme, marinaded chicken with the mix, cooked it in the oven, and always enjoyed the slightly caramelised, charred, sticky end result.

Then, one evening, I fancied a break from the ubiquitous spicy lamb burger (and when I say ubiquitous I just mean in our flat). I bought some pork mince and when it was time to cook I quickly mixed it up with some lemon zest, thyme, and mustard, as we almost always have all three, and a new burger star was born. We occasionally still eat the lamb but this has absolutely become the favourite. It is an after work staple because I can buy all the ingredients in the small supermarket near work, make them in about five minutes, sit down and watch some relaxing nonsense on TV and be eating a decent meal 30 minutes later. I’m sure we all have an easy, reliable, throw it together after work favourite up our sleeves so what’s yours?

Oh, one last thing, these aren’t attractive enough to warrant any kind of photographic effort, and I assumed you didn’t need to see a picture of pork mince because, really, who does.

Enough to fill four pitas, for us that means two servings but that’s just us

500g of pork mince
Zest of one lemon
A pile of fresh thyme leaves
A heaped teaspoon or two of Dijon mustard, depending how much you like it
A generous grinding of ground black pepper and similar of salt

All you need to do is mix everything together thoroughly with your hands. Form it into eight small burgers and bake in a hot oven for about 30 minutes. I could make it more complicated but that isn’t really in the spirit of completely brainless post work food.

To serve we slice these up and pile them into toasted pita breads (if you are lucky enough to be able to buy fresh pitas then do, one of the great benefits of living in a heavily Turkish area is access to amazing pita bread in all the local shops and they are only 35p for five, I can’t get enough). So for an entirely inauthentic pita filling – slice up two pork burgers, add mayonnaise, some Dijon mustard, a sprinkling of sea salt, salad leaves, and finally some sliced cornichons just because I’m hooked on them, and enjoy.


Sarah said...

Sounds great! I *heart* pita too, but it's quite a fair whack from my house to get fresh pita.

xox Sarah

carine said...

oh god these sound lush. will definitely need to try. well done on the daily posting by the way - i'm very impressed x

Gemma said...

Hi Sarah, I don't think I can go back to vacuum packed pita now that I have tasted the real thing!

Hi Carine, thanks, I'm actually quite enjoying it this time round!

Gemma x

Jeanne said...

I love pork burgers! I make a killer one with loads of fresh cilantro and chipotle cutney :)

Anonymous said...

I love that combination - Nigel's such a flavor genius.