Who says pegan-friendly food can’t be loaded with flavor? Here, we’ve taken Belcampo’s grass-fed ground beef and loaded it with fresh herbs and lemon zest, then topped it with crisp dill pickles and loads of caramelized shallots before wrapping them in crunchy lettuce leaves. Tip: For extra crispy lettuce, remove each leaf from the core and then soak them all in ice water while preparing the burgers. Then remove them and dry with paper towels before wrapping. I love making caramelized shallots because they cook a little faster than caramelized onions, but be warned: they taste so good on their own that mine usually disappear before they make it to the table, so you might want to make a double batch! Also, peeling shallots can be a bit tricky, so if you find shallots that are already peeled in the refrigerated section of the produce aisle, it’s a corner worth cutting!
3Tbspof chopped herbs, including parsley, dill, and mint (any combination of the three will work)
1Tbspcoarsely chopped capers
Zest of 1 lemon
Leaves of 1 head of iceberg or green leaf lettuce
Dill pickle slices
Caramelized Shallots (see recipe below)
3cups thinly sliced shallots
Place the ground beef in a large mixing bowl. Sprinkle the herbs, shallots, capers, lemon zest and a teaspoon of kosher salt over the top. Using clean hands or a large mixing spoon, combine the ingredients until the herbs are evenly distributed throughout the meat. Divide the meat into four equal pieces. Using your hands, shape the pieces into four balls and then flatten them to the desired thickness.
When ready to cook, preheat a grill to 400 degrees F. When the grill is hot, place the burgers directly on the grill grate and cook, turning once, until they are cooked to your desired temperature, usually 5-8 minutes in total.
Alternatively, place a large frying pan on the cooktop over high heat. When the pan is smoking, add a teaspoon of olive oil to coat the bottom of the pan. Place the burgers in the pan and cook until browned on one side. Flip and continue cooking until they reach your desired temperature, about 6-8 minutes total.
Allow the burgers to rest for 5-10 minutes before wrapping.
To create the lettuce wrap, place 1 to 2 lettuce leaves on a cutting board, then one burger patty, some pickle chips and a scoop of caramelized shallots. Place another lettuce leaf or two on top. If preferred, wrap the burgers in parchment paper or waxed paper to make them easier to eat burger-style. Otherwise, serve in a bowl.
In a large pan over medium-low heat, warm the olive oil. Add the shallots and a teaspoon of salt and cook, stirring frequently, until the shallots have caramelized and cooked down, about 10-15 minutes. If the bottom of the pan starts to brown too much while stirring, simply add a teaspoon or two of water and scrape up the browned bits with a spatula to incorporate them into the shallots.
Once cooked, allow the shallots to cool for a few minutes, then taste, adding more salt if necessary. Serve immediately or refrigerate and store up to 5 days in the refrigerator.
Recipes by Amanda Haas (exclusively for Belcampo Meat Co.)