Step aside beef patties, there is a new “burger” in town!
We could debate about being vegetarian, we could battle over Paleo or low carb diets, and we could even dispute the health benefits of meat….but….not today. Today I’m going to talk about the one thing that health professionals DO agree on….
EAT MORE VEGGIES
Now, you may be making that squeamish face reminiscent of your 3 year old when you passed him the creamed spinach, but I tell you, if you want a truly delicious way to eat more veggies, make them into a darn burger and be amazed how good and satisfying it can taste! You may be thinking “hmmm…she has a point, i could eat that gorgeous little burger she is showing in that picture”, but if you need more convincing, keep your mind open and forget all you know about those little frozen patty veggies burgers… THIS is NOT THAT!
I have tried just about every veggie burger on the market and even many home made ones! The best part about home made is that you can make any way you want, and my recent acquisition of a handy cuisinart food processor was just the motivating factor to start the experiments! So here we go…
First Step: Get your ingredients.
This is the hardest and easiest part because you can put just about anything in the burger, just be aware of the amount of liquid in the different foods because moisture will ruin your burger. Here is what I used:
1 red bell pepper, 2 cloves garlic, 1 small white onion, 1/2 cup sun dried tomato, 1 cup white mushrooms, 1/2 cup peas, 1 cup of spinach, 1 small can water chestnuts, 1/2 can garbonzo, 1/2 can red beans, 1/4 cup pumpkin seeds, 1/4 cup hemp seeds, 1/4 cup chia seeds, 1/4 cup + quinoa flour, 4 eggs +1
Next step: Toss it all into the food processor and pulse until well chopped but not puree (this pic is about half way there)
Now that we have a lovely mix, we have to add just a bit of salt, maybe a teaspoon… this draws some water out of the veggies and the chia seeds jump into action. As they absorb the water, they will become a bit starchy and help keep your burger together. You can let it sit in the bowl for about 15 min if needed. Next, you want to add 4 eggs to the mix. Your main binders will be the eggs, the chia seeds and the mushrooms. You can add any veggies but i would always include some sort of mushroom because in addition to adding a certain “meaty” quality, they also keep it together. Now form some patties, sprinkle salt and pepper on each side, and heat up a pan with coconut oil. Brown both sides and serve with a yummy mustard sauce or some ripe avocado. (If your patties are too soft, add more quinoa flour and some cheese (i like parm or feta) of your choice to thicken it until its about the consistency of falafel mix)
You will probably notice that there is enough mix to make a whole bunch of burgers and if you don’t think you will use it all, I recommend making a “meatloaf” with the rest. Take 1/3 of your mix and add the extra egg, some cheese, and breadcrumbs or oats and put it into a pie pan or bread pan and bake at 350 F for 45 min or until the top is all toasty. This will allow you to serve the “veggie burger” in different ways such as on top of a salad or along side some eggs and bacon.
With my “meatloaf” I decided to add it to a spinach and feta salad and make a whole grain mustard, coconut vinegar, and blood orange bitters dressing. It was amazingly tasty and made me feel awesome. I guess thats the point right?!