30 Minute Thursdays: Feta-Stuffed Burgers & Greek Side Salad

These burgers are the reason why my dad has dubbed me the official best burger maker ever. Juicy and full of flavor, it's no wonder they were a hit with my family during a recent 30 Minute Thursday meal. His didn't even have cheese stuffed into the center of it since he's lactose intolerant, and he still raved about them.

Granted, I can't take all the credit. Ever since making the switch to grass-fed beef, I have been eating much higher quality red meat.- only less frequently. It also doesn't hurt that Whole Foods seems to only sell 85% lean grass fed ground beef, which is a gripe I have for a post of its own but makes for a decidedly juicier burger due to the extra fat. Soaking the burgers in red wine before cooking probably helps, too. But if my dad wants to sing my burger cooking praises, I'll be gracious enough to say thank you and keep my secret ingredients to myself. And, you know, all of you lucky folks.

The recipe originally called for blue cheese, but my family didn't like the sound of that so I swapped it for feta and paired it with a greek salad, also a Rachael Ray creation. I couldn't find the pepperoncini peppers so I used jalapenos which were a little too raw and intense, and I found the dressing to be too overpowering (adjusted below), but other than that it was an enjoyable, simple side for the burger.

One Year Ago: Strawberry-Mango Power Smoothie, Apples & Honey Salad

Feta Stuffed Burgers with Side Greek Salad, adapted from Rachael Ray's Classic 30 Minute Meals
Yield: 4 servings
(printable recipe)

The Ingredients
1 pound lean (grass-fed) ground beef
hot sauce, to taste (a couple of healthy shakes)
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1/4 pound reduced fat feta cheese
1/4 cup dry red wine
rolls, red onion, and lettuce for serving (optional)

1-2 teaspoons minced garlic
2 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon lemon juice
pinch of allspice
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
4-6 cups spring mix greens
2 plum tomatoes, diced
1/2 medium red onion, thinly sliced
1/2 cucume, thinly sliced
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped*
2-3 tablespoons crumbled feta cheese (optional)
1/2 tablespoon dried oregano

The Method
Mix the hot sauce and pepper into the beef and separate it into quarters. Place 1 tablespoon cheese in the center of each quarter and form a patty around it, sealing off the filling completely. Keep the patties no thicker than 3/4 inches.

Pour the wine into a shallow dish and allow the patties to soak in the liquid, turning once to get both sides, 5 minutes per side. While the patties soak, heat a pan to medium, then add the burgers and cook for 4-6 minutes per side.* Serve with rolls, onion, lettuce, and salad (prepared while the burgers cook).

Wash the greens and dry them well. Meanwhile, combine the oil and g a microwave safe bowl and heat for 30 seconds until the garlic starts to sizzle, producing a garlic-infused oil. Whisk in the lemon juice, allspice, and pepper. Set aside.

Combine the lettuce, tomatoes, red onion, cucumber, peppers, cheese (if using), and oregano in a large serving bowl. Toss with the dressing, starting with a modest amount and adding more to taste.

*Alterrnatively use a handful of pepperoncini hot peppers, chopped, for a more authentic flavor.
**My burgers were still raw after this amount of time, and most of us like them medium/medium rare. I had to throw them back in the pan, so you might want to consider being really strict about the patty size (I didn't pay much attention beyond making each patty roughly equal), and lowering the heat and cooking them maybe 8 minutes per side. I'm still getting the hang of cooking meats other than chicken, so use your best judgment.


  • Digg
  • Del.icio.us
  • StumbleUpon
  • Reddit
  • RSS


Post a Comment