Thursday, July 11, 2013

Base Recipe for Veggie Burgers

My Postcard Painting #10: Oy! Black Beans
I read a lot of recipes for veggie burgers last night, and finally cottoned onto the basic pattern, which is . . .

1. Smash up (with a fork or potato masher) cooked beans (say, black or soy)
––and/or legumes (like, lentils) and grains (brown rice, etc.).
You can also include seeds (e.g. quinoa) and/or nuts (walnuts).

The quantity doesn't matter too very much--if the mix is too wet, you can add more dry stuff at the end.

2. Add vegetables, finely chopped, grated, or puréed (in a blender or food processor)  
–– like, carrots, bell pepper, corn off the cob, spinach, mushrooms, cooked sweet potato, etc.
 And garlic + onion is almost mandatory.

3. Add your choice of spices, herbs, or other flavorings
––say,  ancho chiles + ground cumin
or fresh grated ginger + soy sauce
...and/or fresh herbs, like basil or mint or cilantro

Quantity does matter with spices; if you're uncertain, refer to a recipe.

4. Optional flavorful fats/binders
––a glug of olive oil; 
and/or an egg (excellent for binding, but skip if vegan, obviously)

5. You'll probably need to add something dry 
to help hold the wet mix together
––a handful of bread crumbs, or uncooked rolled oats, or cornmeal
(Don't make the mix too dry---these agents will swell as they absorb liquid.)

6.  Shape into patties, or a loaf, or cake, and cook
––bake (easiest, I'd say, since veggie burgers tend to fall apart), or broil, or fry, or grill

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