Tuesday, 14 August 2012

The oh so beety burger

I hope everybody had a great weekend! I spent half of mine getting a bike and the other half trying to fix it, so I had to catch up on my cooking tonight! I also went to the Calgary market and it was awesome! Wherever you are, I suggest you find out about the closest farmer’s market and plan a visit! It makes much more sense to buy products from your local grower rather than buying tasteless strawberries from the US or waxy peppers from Mexico! My new favorite things to get at the market this summer are yellow tomatoes! Oh wow! Thank you nature, they are sooo Yummy! I integrated them as a topping in this amazing burger recipe which by the way is by Isa Chandra Moskowitz from Post Punk Kitchen. Before we begin, I want to specify that this is not the kind of recipe you decide to do at 7:30pm on a Tuesday night (Unless you’re like me and you can’t sit still for more than 10 minutes) because it takes a little more work. I like to freeze the extra patties so I can have quick easy meals for long training nights!
This recipe calls for lentils. You can either buy the lentils in cans (buy them Organic and in BPA free cans) or get them in bulk for much cheaper and soak them. Here is the soaking method:
Place 1 cup of lentils in a bowl and cover them with water. Let them sit for 4 hours, drain and rinse. Transfer into a pot and boil them for 15-20 minutes or until they are soft. Let them cool and store in the fridge. I usually plan this ahead of time so I don’t have to wait (Because I absolutely hate waiting!). Same idea with the rice. We talked already about the fact that it’s much faster to cook a bit of rice ahead of time and freeze it so you don’t have to wait while it cooks.
One last thing, you can make your own breadcrumbs easily by grounding your favorite crackers or even a toast in the food processor for a few minutes. I like to use Mary’s gone Crackers.
Prep time: 30 minutes    Waiting time:  30 minutes  Cooking time: 20 minutes  Serving: 6 or 7 patties
1 1/4 cups cooked, cooled brown rice (See notes above)
1 cup cooked brown or green lentils, cooled, drained well (See notes above)
1 cup shredded beets (About one large beet)
1/2 teaspoon salt
Fresh black pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground fennel (or finely crushed fennel seed)
1 teaspoon dry mustard
3 tablespoons very finely chopped onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons smooth almond butter
1/2 cup very fine breadcrumbs (See notes above)
Start by Grating the beets with the shredding attachment of your food processor or using a simple grater. Add the lentils and rice and process using the pulse mode for about 1 minute (20-25 pulses). Transfer this in a bowl with all other ingredients and mix well. Place the bowl in the fridge for about 30 minutes for the mixture to set.

In the meantime, cut out some squares of parchment paper (7 or 8). I like to use a 4” cookie cutter to make big patties that look as nicely cut as the restaurant ones. I believe that food should not only taste good but it should look appealing too!
Waiting time is over! Take the mixture out of the fridge and star making your patties. To make it easier use one sheet of parchment paper and place the cookie cutter on it. Take some of the mixture and start forming the patty. Once it’s all flat and even, gently remove it from the cutter by lightly pressing on it and set aside. Follow the same steps for all the other ones and pile them on top of each other, always using the parchment paper in between (it prevents them from sticking).

The main part is done! When I make them I always want to eat one right away so I cook it in the oven at 350F for about 15 minutes. You can cook them in a pan if you want but I like to use the oven because I garnish it before cooking it! On this one, I used pesto as a condiment and added spinach and yellow tomatoes. Just to make this even better, I also cooked some Butternut Squash hash brown that were pre-cut in my freezer!

If you still have some of that Ketchup from the Tofu &Tomato Risotto recipe, spread it on your bun to make everything even better!
Alright! Time for me to eat… and go to bed!
Good night!

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