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Middle Eastern Cousa Burger

This is a tasty burger variation on a dish called Cousa (pronounced Kusa) that my grandfather brought from Syria when he emigrated to the US many years ago. Cousa calls for ground lamb and rice to be stuffed in zuccini and cooked. After cooked, the zuccini is cut open and a tomato sauce is poured onto the zuccini lamb and rice. I created this burger as a ready way to recapture the wonderful flavors that I grew up with.


1 Tblsp Extra Virgin Olive oil
1 Medium onion (chopped)
1 Medium zuccini (peeled & chopped)
1 8 oz can of diced tomatoes (drained)
1/2 tsp sugar
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
2 lbs ground lamb
1 Medium zuccini (on this second zuccini, peel and slice into 12 thin stips about 1 in wide and 3 in. long)
Brush on olive oil.
12 small individual pita breads; if too large cut to burger size


1. Heat saucepan with 1 tblsp of olive oil over the grill. 2. Add the chopped onion and chopped zuccini and saute until tender, about 5 min. 3. Add 8 oz can of diced tomatoes (drained). 4. Add 1/2 tsp of sugar 5. Add 1/2 tsp of salt 6. Add 1/2 tsp of pepper 7. Let above ingredients simmer on low heat for at least 10 minutes. Take saucepan off grill, and set aside. 8. Meanwhile, mix remaining salt and pepper into ground lamb and shape into six evenly sized burgers. (1/3 lb each) 9. Place lamb burgers on hot grill. Cook for 7 minutes per side or until medium (desired) doneness. 10. During last 5 minutes, place slices of zuccini on grill, turning when beginning to brown. 11. Remove burgers and sliced zuccini onto plate. 12. Lightly toast pita bread on grill. 13. Place burger on pita breads and top with two slices of the grilled zuccini and then two Tblsp of sauce from saucepan. Top with remaining pita breads. 14. Serve and enjoy!


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