Sometimes you want a burger that can hold its own with the carnivores in your life, a vegie burger that’s not pretending to be meat but is just as weighty and fulfilling when served in a fresh white roll with salads, pickles, and a side of spicy homefries. This is that burger. I made this in honour of a die-hard carnivore friend’s birthday and sent her the pictures. Her response? “Holy! Looks so meaty!”.
This is another excellent recipe that’s heavily adapted from the Post Punk Kitchen – you can check out the original here. I didn’t char mine the way Isa directs you to, and shaped them a little differently, but they turned out divinely! It’s super easy to make, especially if you have a food processor. You might be tempted to skip the processor and grate the beets and mix the rest of the ingredients by hand to save the washing up, but just try it. It creates the perfect texture and makes this recipe come together really quickly and easily.
The homefries are a speciality of my partner Trina – she’s part Irish and more than a little potato obsessed. No one does a chip better than her, so we shared the kitchen for this one! She doesn’t use measurements but just goes by taste and texture so use your intuition on the amount of spices etc to use.
1 1/4 cups cooked, cooled brown rice
1 cup cooked brown or green lentils, cooled, drained well
1 cup shredded beetroot
1/2 teaspoon salt
Fresh black pepper
1 teaspoon thyme, rubbed between your fingers
1/2 teaspoon ground fennel (or finely crushed fennel seed)
1 teaspoon mustard
3 tablespoons very finely chopped onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons nut butter
1/2 cup breadcrumbs
Approx 3 potatoes
Slap Ya Mama seasoning
The recipe calls for cooked, cooled brown rice and cooked lentils, so if you don’t have those things on hand already make sure you put those on to cook first. I used tinned brown lentils to save time as I hadn’t cooked any beforehand and it worked out well too, but I’ll bet it would be even better with freshly cooked ones! Slice the potatoes into a chip shape and parboil until soft but not falling apart (approx 10 minutes depending on the size and the kind of potato you are using).
Peel the beetroots and shred with the shredder attachment of the food processor. Change the attachment to the metal blade and add the cooked rice and lentils. Pulse until the texture looks right – you want it to still have some texture but to hold together.
Transfer to a mixing bowl and add the rest of the ingredients, mixing with your hands. Once combined, chill in the fridge for half an hour. The mixture should look like this:
Drain the potatoes and arrange on a greased oven tray. Pour a small amount of olive oil over them, and toss to coat. Sprinkle with sea salt, Slap Ya Mama, chipotle powder, and Herbamare to taste. Bake for approx 20 minutes in a 200 degree oven, turning the chips at 10 minutes. They are done when golden brown and crispy.
While the chips are cooking, heat a cast iron pan over a medium high heat and form the patties. Each patty uses 1/2 cup of mixture. You can use a burger mold or just use your hands. I shaped mine to be about 2cm thick. Add a thin layer of olive oil to the pan and cook the patties a few at a time, depending on the size of your pan. You will want to add more oil as they cook so just add a little as needed. The burgers will take approx. 12 minutes to cook, flipping once or twice to ensure even cooking.
We served these on soft white rolls with sauteed mushrooms and onions, fresh salads, cheese, my homemade green tomato pickle, and a little hot sauce. Add a chilled beer and you’ve got one hell of an awesome homemade burger meal!