Recipe – Greek Buffalo Burgers
Today was probably the second best day of the year (the first being my wedding day!) because football has returned. And given that my lovely bride is on call tonight, I had the day to myself – which provided for ample opportunity to take in lots of gridiron action and get to grilling and Week 1 of my new Sunday feature, Gourmet from the Tailgate.
My choice for Week 1 action? A really great, really healthy, Greek Buffalo Burger. It features feta cheese, colossal Greek olives, Roma tomatoes and mild yellow pepper rings. It’s absolutely fantastic and a lot more flavorful than your run of the mill tailgate burgers. Trust me guys, the effort is worth it.
If you’ve never tried a buffalo burger or buffalo meat, I highly recommend it. My local grocer carries it most weeks and it’s absolutely certified organic. It’s also quite lean. The meat I get most often comes from Maverick Ranch, a family owned ranch dedicated to environmentally sustainable ranching. Their Buffalo program raises meat on only natural grasses, omits any animal by-product and antibiotics. They also use no hormones. These are really great alternatives to the frozen beef patties or ground beef, and you’re helping sustainable farming (go you!).
So, let’s get cooking.
- 1 pound Ground Buffalo Meat
- 2 Roma Tomatoes sliced into rings
- 2 Tablespoons mild yellow peppers
- 7 colossal Greek black olives – cut into quarters
- 3 tablespoons Crumbled Feta Cheese (get the dried kind not the brine packed, it will add too much salt and kill the taste of your buffalo!)
- 2 tablespoons Dan’s Burger seasoning (recipe below)
- 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
- 2 whole wheat kaiser rolls
1. Pull the meat from your package and place it into a medium sized bowl. After you’ve washed those hands, massage the meat a bit and add the burger seasoning and the lime juice. If you’d like, you can add the feta at this step or use it as a topping. I use 1 tablespoon per half pound of meat, so you don’t add too much salt to the buffalo.
2. After kneading the spices into the buffalo meat, form two patties (I like my burgers thick, but if you want smaller patties, you can probably pull off four from a pound of meat).
3. Once you’re done, bring your meat out to a pre-heated grill and toss those babies on.
4. Cook according to directions on the package. Because it’s leaner than beef, Buffalo will cook faster! So, if you like your burgers a bit more on the rare or medium rare side, be sure you pull them off sooner than you think you’ll need to. In my experience Ground buffalo will reach 160˚F 15%-20% faster than ground beef or even ground sirloin. If it’s your first time cooking with buffalo, use a thermometer and check the internal temperature often. Mine took about 4 minutes a side, if not a little less, for a nice pink medium rare.
5. Place your burger on a kaiser roll and top with the colossal Greek olives, the feta (if you didn’t add it to the meat), the pepper rings and the tomatoes. Couldn’t be easier!
These burgers are huge on flavor and the tart feta cheese, tang of the pepper rings and rich saltiness of the Greek olives all play very well with the slightly gamier taste of the Buffalo meat. These things literally melt in your mouth they’re so lean. All in all, they’re a lot healthier for you as well. So you won’t feel as guilty polishing off that second one if you’re on your own (though admittedly I couldn’t finish the second). It pairs very well with Sam Adams’ Oktoberfest and is perfect for any football pre-game.
Now, if I could only get the lowly Lions to play as well as these things taste. At least I’ll have the food coma to overcome the poor score.
Oh, and if you want to try my spice blend here’s the recipe!
Dan’s Burger Rub (Recipe good for 1 pound of meat)
- 2 tablespoons salt
- 2 tablespoons garlic powder
- 2 tablespoons onion powder
- 2 tablespoons black pepper
- 1 teaspoon lemon pepper
- 1 teaspoon Cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon Celery salt