Elk Burgers with Tomato Chilli Relish

Powerful flavours to the fore in Danny Boome's elk burgers with a chilli, onion and roasted garlic relish
By Danny Boome
Elk Burgers with Tomato Chilli Relish
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 6
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes (assumes pre-roasted garlic)
  • Prep Time: 40 minutes plus 20 mins resting in the fridge
  • Effort: medium



  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 shallots, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 6 slices of bacon, diced small
  • 900 g ground elk
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tbsp parsley, chopped
  • salt, and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 egg, beaten

For the tomato chilli relish:

  • 1/2 red onions, diced
  • 1 or 2 green chillies, finely diced
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 4 clove garlic, roasted
  • 10 plum tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp parsley, chopped
  • salt

To serve:

  • 2 large focaccia, cut into 12 pieces
  • rocket

Tips and Suggestions

Ground elk is hard to come by the UK, but ground venison - particularly wild venison - will work well in this recipe.


1. In a heavy-based frying pan placed over medium heat fry the garlic and shallots in olive oil for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until softened. Remove from the pan and set aside to cool.

2. Cook the bacon in the pan over medium-high heat until somewhat crisp. Remove from the pan and set aside to cool, retaining the fat.

3. In a large mixing bowl, mix the elk with the Worcestershire sauce, parsley and seasoning. Fold the beaten egg into the mixture, followed by the cooled garlic, shallots, bacon and bacon fat. Refrigerate the mixture for 20 minutes.

4. Make the relish while the meat is chilling.

5. In a heavy-based frying pan placed over high heat, fry the onion and chilli in the olive oil until brown and softened. Add the vinegar and honey. Continue to cook over high heat, stirring, until the liquid is reduced to a glaze. Add the garlic and half of the tomatoes and season. Cook over high heat until the tomatoes appear charred - about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and transfer to a mixing bowl.

6. Once the mixture has cooled somewhat, add the remaining tomatoes and the parsley and adjust the seasoning with salt, vinegar and honey.

7. Remove the burger mixture from the fridge and shape into 6 equal patties.

8. Arrange the patties on an oiled barbecue or grill rack, or in a heavy-based frying pan and cook over medium high heat, turning once, until done to your liking.

9. To serve, grill the focaccia pieces and split. Serve alongside the burgers, relish and fresh rocket.

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