Exciting burger-kebabs with a south east Asian twist

One of the inevitable things that happens to a person once he or she has started living abroad is constant exposition to new information. And that will spoil them forever. The wish for more and new will be their everyday partner.

Sometimes I think of my father’s mother. She was born and lived in Crete all of her life. She knew many of the islands herbs, vegetables, she carried the wisdom of people that have stayed on the same place on earth for thousands of years.

I remember her presence in the kitchen when I was little. She was sharing with my mother her life experience handling the dough, cleaning herbs, preparing honey pastries. I think of her and I wonder, what would she think of me if she was alive? Would she approve that my home is the whole world? Would she be ok that I use Indian spices and south east Asian herbs to  the recipes that the people of our island have enjoyed for thousands of years?

The answer to this question will stay a mystery for me. But the results of this weekend’s culinary experiments will be no secret to you.

If you wish to spice up your burgers in an unexpected way follow the recipe bellow.


Ingredients for 4 people:

  • 400gr ground meat (pork, beef, chicken any meat you wish)
  • 150gr smacked abread
  • 1 small red onion finely chopped in a food processor
  • 1 small egg
  • half a bunch of fresh mint leaves roughly chopped
  • 1 medium jicama root finely chopped in a food processor ( it can be replaced by a small green apple)
  • 1/2 tsp orange zest
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground cumin seeds
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • half tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground nutmeg
  • jus of a lemon
  • Jus of an orange
  • 2 stalks  lemongrass
  • 5-10 kaffir leaves
  • a small chili
  • 4 medium potatoes
  • extra virgin Greek olive oil



  • Preheat your oven to 200 C
  • In a large bowl mix the ground meat, bread-crumbs, the small red onion, the egg, the fresh mint leaves, the jicama root, the orange zest, the freshly ground cumin seeds, the turmeric, paprika, freshly ground black pepper and the nutmeg.
  • Chop your potatoes in large wedges, you may keep the skin on if you like this.
  • I a medium sized tray lay your potato wedges. Add the lemongrass stalks, the kaffir leaves and the whole chili on them.
  • Add the lemon and orange juice.
  • Shape your meat mixture in medium sized burgers and place them on top of your potatoes.
  • Drizzle some extra virgin Greek olive oil.
  • Place an aluminium foil on the tray and cook for 40 minutes.
  • After 40 minutes take away the aluminium foil and cook for extra 5-10 minutes on each side of the burgers.
  • Your dish is ready.
  • Serve it with a colourful salad.


Enjoy 🙂




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