Every time we’re fasting from meat, I am tempted to make a veggie burger from scratch … but I’m always a bit intimidated by the process. Sure, anyone can mix a bunch of ingredients in the shape of a patty and call it a burger, but I actually wanted it to taste good. For my first attempt, I think I did a pretty good job. I used equal parts of beans (adzuki, black and cannellini), quinoa, and mixed wild mushrooms. And then Sherif worked his magic with the spices. Now that’s a protein monster, if I do say so myself!
For the Vegan Protein Burgers (makes about 9 large patties)
- 1/3 cup dry adzuki beans, soaked overnight in an acidic medium (discard water in the morning)
- 1/3 cup dry black beans, soaked overnight in an acidic medium (discard water in the morning)
- 1/3 cup dry cannellini beans, soaked overnight in an acidic medium (discard water in the morning)
- 1 cup quinoa, soaked for a few hours, then rinsed
- 1 full cup of mixed wild mushrooms
- 1/2 cup of parsley, finely chopped
- 1 onion, chopped
- 3-5 cloves garlic, crushed
- Flax “egg” – made of 1 tablespoon of flaxmeal (ground flax seed) + 3 tablespoons water that is whisked and chilled in the fridge for about an hour –> I did not have flaxmeal on hand, so my burgers did not hold together very well. **The flaxmeal is essential for making vegan burger because it has cohesive properties and holds the patties together.
- 1/4 teaspoon asafoetida powder, to de-gas all the beans
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 tablespoon organic Jamaican jerk sauce
- 2-3 tablespoons vegan organic Worcestershire sauce
- 5-6 drops of Tabasco sauce
- Himalayan sea salt
- freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- tiny pinch of cayenne pepper
For the Bun
- Sprouted-wheat buns (one of the better options)
- Tomatoes, sliced
- Onions, sliced
- Romaine lettuce, 1 leaf for each bun
- Condiments: choose tahini sauce, guacamole, organic ketchup or Dijon mustard … or anything else you like
The most time-consuming thing about this recipe is the need to cook all the components separately, grind them separately, and then mix them together and add spices. The whole process from start to finish maybe took about 3 hours (including cooking time).
(1) Cook beans. Soak beans overnight and discard water in the morning. In a pot add 1 cup of water to every 1/3 cup of beans. (So here I added 3 cups of water). Bring to a boil; then lower heat to medium-low. Add 1/4 teaspoon of asafoetida powder and cook for about 3 hours, until beans are tender. Once they are fully cooked, add cumin, salt, olive oil, and lime juice and blend all completely in a blender.
(2) Cook quinoa. Peel and crush 4 or so cloves of garlic and add to oiled pot. Sauté on medium heat till golden. Add 1 cup of rinsed quinoa and mix well with garlic. Add 2 cups of water and leave on medium heat till boiling, then lower heat. Leave to cook for about 15 minutes or until water has evaporated and quinoa is fluffy.
(3) Sauté mushrooms and onion together. Chop onion and add to oiled skillet with cup of mushrooms. Sauté for 5-6 minutes on medium-high heat, stirring frequently. Once mixture has cooled, use blender to blend till smooth.
(4) Prepare spice mix. Chop 1/2 cup of fresh parsley. Add flaxmeal, Jamaican jerk sauce, Worcestershire sauce, few drops of Tabasco, salt, black pepper and a tiny pinch of cayenne. Taste to make sure it seems balanced (for example, not too salty).
(5) Mix it alllll up. Bring a big bowl. Dump all the different components – beans, quinoa, mushroom & onion mix, and spices. Use a wide fork (or if you like the mess, your hands) and mix thoroughly making sure that all ingredients have been integrated well.
(6) Form patties. With damp hands (so the mixture doesn’t stick on your hand), form patties out of fist-sized portions of mixture. Place on an oiled baking sheet and pat down lightly to form a patty.
(7) Bake it. Preheat oven to 350 F and bake for 30 minutes or so, until the patties have hardened a bit.
(8) Put it in a bun. Make it pretty with all the condiments and consume.
So there’s the vegan protein burger for ya – Heba’s exclusive recipe. Of course, it doesn’t compare to savory pastured meat, but it’s pretty darn good for a vegan burger … and very filling too!
If you need more reasons to take a break from eating meat, check out this adorable video of a German girl who trained her cow to jump (not over the moon … but still impressive). Short story: Sweet cowgirl who lives on a farm wanted a horse to race, but her strict parents refused. She was obedient in that she didn’t get run away or ride horses behind their backs, but she was resourceful and trained her (pet) cow, Luna, to jump over obstacles. That’s determination for you!
Okay, folks! Let me know what you think of my vegan protein burger if you get a chance to try it!
Au revoir for now … time to unwind (ya, right!) by getting back to some emails.