Based on my last name, everyone thinks I am Greek. I am definitely Greek with a name like George Zikos, however, I am half Armenian also! Every year, in June, I go to the Armenian picnic/bazaar at St. Gregory’s Armenian Orthodox church in Indian Orchard, MA. It’s nice to see my Armenian family and meet distant cousins, but since I’m so obsessed with food, you can guess why I’m really there. This is a much smaller church and community than a lot of the huge Greek picnics held in New England, and for this reason, they focus on making all the food fresh and traditional without having to worry about feeding massive crowds. As soon as you step out of your car, you can smell the charcoal and meat aromas wafting through the air. It’s always funny to see the men grilling, arguing about which meat needs to be flipped and/or taken off the grill. They grill on a large rectangular grill with charcoal, which I think gives the best flavor when grilling. These lamb burgers are one of my favorites.
There are two main options, shish kebab, and losh kebab. The shish kebab is delicious, but the losh kebab is much harder to find outside of these picnics. The losh kebab is a large burger made with fifty percent lamb, fifty percent beef. It is mixed with amazing herbs, spices, and chopped white onion. It’s an absolute flavor bomb. There is lots of fresh parsley and onion chopped up and mixed into the beef and lamb burgers. I also notice a slight tomatoey flavor which is from the tomato paste. For spices, the main note I taste is cumin, which is so delicious in grilled meat recipes. The losh kebab is cooked to your liking. I personally like mine a little pink in the middle because it stays juicy that way. If you like it cooked well done that obviously works great too.
Losh kebab can be served in a couple of different ways. At the Armenian picnic that I go to, it is served with buttery Armenian rice pilaf, salad with olive oil and vinegar, pita bread, and a mixture of chopped onions and fresh parsley.
These beef and lamb burgers are a beautiful and filling plate to serve your guests. Armenian pilaf is loved by everyone, not just Armenians, because of its buttery and comforting nature. Everyone always asks for my mom Lucine’s recipe and I hope to share it with you in the near future. Besides the losh kebab plate, you can get it in a sandwich also. I take a piece of fresh pita bread and open it. Then I cut the losh kebab in half and spoon in a lot of onion/fresh parsley mixture, the more the better! I don’t usually put any sauce in this sandwich because I want the losh kebab to rule, but yogurt would be an amazing condiment. A fresh squeeze of lemon can’t hurt either! I hope you enjoy this recipe and please comment on how your losh kebabs came out, and if there’s anything you would change.
George studied International Business in Greece in 2015 for three semesters. His family is from the island of Crete, and he lived with them for a whole summer. During that time, he started working for Mediterranean Living and contributing his firsthand experiences of the traditional Cretan diet. He learned fluent Greek along the way, being fully immersed in a traditional Cretan village. He is since graduated with a business degree from Worcester State University. George loves language and traveling, so he completed a TEFL certificate program at the Boston Language Institute in order to teach English abroad and travel the world. He currently works full-time blogging, recipe formulating, and social media marketing for Mediterranean Living. His passions include language, gardening, hiking, skateboarding, and watching sports. He dreams of living in Crete one day, after he travels the world learning as many languages and cultures as possible.