This is the only way to celebrate National Burger Day

Today is the day to celebrate the humble burger. As if you needed a reason

Yes, #NationalBurgerDay is a thing. The burger bandwagon rolls on and our craving for the juicy patty nestled between a pillowy soft bun doesn’t seem to be wavering.

If you’re not hungry now, you soon will be …

Lamb, apricot and coriander burgers

Serves: 4

Preparation time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: 20 minutes

You will need
450g lamb mince 25g dried apricots, finely chopped 25g shelled pistachio nuts or almonds, finely chopped 1 tbsp freshly chopped coriander or mint Grated zest and juice of ½ lemon Salt and freshly milled black pepper

Method
1. In a large bowl, mix all the ingredients together.

2. Using slightly damp hands shape the mixture into 4 x 9cm/3½inch burgers. Cover and chill in the fridge for 20 minutes.

3. Cook the burgers on a prepared barbecue or preheated moderate grill for 6-8 minutes on each side until cooked and any meat juices run clear.

4. Serve the burgers in a burger bun with a salad garnish and a selection of relishes.

Recipe Simply Beef & Lamb

Polenta chips with almond za’atar salt

Polenta can be bland when under-salted, but is utterly delicious when seasoned properly so don’t worry that this almond, spiced salt will be overkill.

You will need

For the polenta chips:
250g coarse, quick-cook polenta 900ml strong vegetable stock 30g parmesan, finely grated
½ [half] tsp salt 1 tsp coarsely ground black pepper 2 tbsp olive oil

For the almond za’atar salt:
100g roasted and salted almonds, roughly crushed 25g sesame seeds, toasted 4 tsp dried oregano 4 tsp ground sumac 4 tsp cumin seeds, toasted and roughly crushed 2 tbsp sea salt flakes 4 tbsp fresh oregano leaves, chopped

Method
1. Line a 20x30cm baking tin with clingfilm and set aside. Put the vegetable stock in a medium saucepan and bring up to the boil. Stirring constantly, add the polenta in a steady stream and continue to stir and cook until the mixture thickens. This should take about 2 minutes.

2. Stir in the parmesan, salt and black pepper. Pour into the lined tin, level the surface and set aside to cool completely for at least 3 hours. This step can be done up to 2 days in advance – keep the polenta covered in the fridge until needed.

4. To make the almond za’atar, combine the crushed almonds with the remaining ingredients except the fresh oregano and mix well. Keep in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks. Preheat the oven to 200°C, gas 6.

5. Cut the polenta into slim ‘chips’ and carefully toss with the olive oil. Spread out on two lined baking sheets and bake for 25 minutes, turning halfway, until golden and crisp. Add the fresh oregano leaves to the za’atar and serve alongside the hot chips, ready to scatter over.

Recipe Alice Hart

Herb salad with pumpkin seeds and a buttermilk dressing

This salad couldn’t be easier. Make the dressing and toast the pumpkin seeds ahead to buy yourself some time.

Serves: 8

You will need

For the salad:
120g wild rocket leaves a handful mixed, soft summer herbs, such as fennel, parsley, chives and basil 5 fat asparagus stalks, trimmed and shaved into long strips A handful of edible flowers, such as tiny viola flowers or chive flowers (optional)
50g pumpkin seeds, toasted

For the buttermilk dressing:
200ml buttermilk 100ml extra virgin olive oil 1 tsp Dijon mustard 1 tsp caster sugar
½ lemon, juice only 3 tbsp finely chopped chives

Method
1. Toss the salad ingredients together just before needed.

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2. To make the dressing, whisk all the ingredients together with a tablespoon of water and season to taste. Spoon over the salad to serve.

Recipe Alice Hart

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