03 Dec The Ultimate Veggie Burger
The Ultimate Veggie Burger
I love veggie burgers. And I'm not talking about a reheated soy or garden patty variety, but that perfect house made loaded patty that makes you forget about wanting to eat meat. I'm always churning out new recipes for them at home and I'm constantly on the hunt for great ones when I eat out (finding a restaurant that treats the veggie burger as a chance to shine instead of an afterthought is rare, but when they do it can be a thing of beauty). The key ingredients for that ultimate veggie burger are (in my humble opinion) 1. The patty stays together when you bite into the bun 2. The patty is filled with a creative combination of grains, vegetables, and seasoning instead of soy 3. The finished plate has a killer bun and layers of toppings 4. The patty stands up in flavor and texture to those loaded toppings so it doesn't get lost in the shuffle and finally 5. You get a bit messy when eating it. I have created several versions of veggie burgers, with a variety of flavor profiles and toppings, but this recipe is by far my favorite to date: a complex flavored patty sandwiched between a lightly toasted Brioche bun and perfectly layered toppings. This isn't a quick process, but it's very easy, and if you follow all the steps you will piece together quite a fantastic stack. Enjoy!
- 1 Cup Toasted Almonds
- 1 Cup BBQ Sauce
- 1 Tablespoon Cumin
- 1 Cup Sweet Onions, peeled and cut into ¼ inch slices (do not separate the rings)
- 2 Large Portobello Mushrooms
- 1 Jalapeño, Stem Removed and roughly chopped (optional but recommended)
- 1 Cup Packed Arugula
- 2 Cloves Garlic
- 1 Cup Cooked Brown Rice
- 3 Pitted Medjool Dates
- 2 Tablespoons Fresh Parsley
- 1 Can Kidney Beans, drained and rinsed
- 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
- ½ Tablespoon Kosher Sea Salt
- 1 Egg, lightly beaten
- 1 Cup Organic Oats
- 1-1.5 Cups Whole Wheat Bread Crumbs
- 2-4 Tablespoons Olive oil for cooking the patties
Quick Roasted Tomatoes
- 8 Roma Tomatoes, halved
- 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
- 1 Teaspoon Kosher Salt
Quick Caramelized Onions
- 3 Large Sweet Onions, peeled and cut into thin slices
- 1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
- 1 Teaspoon Kosher Salt
- 4 Small Hass Avocados, Sliced
- 2 Cups Arugula
- 8 Slices Swiss Cheese
- 8 Tablespoons Mayonnaise
- 2 Tablespoons Butter, Softened at Room Temperature
- 8 Brioche Buns
Quick Roast Tomatoes
- Slice tomatoes lengthwise in half, toss with 1 tablespoon olive oil and spread cut side up on a sheet pan. Sprinkle with salt and roast in a 425 degree oven for 15-20 minutes until shrunken and starting to turn brown on top. Remove from oven and set aside. Turn oven down to 350 degrees.
Quick Caramelize Onions
- Heat a large dry sauté pan over medium high heat (no oil!). Add onions and stir frequently until they start to brown, about 5-10 minutes, but watch closely to make sure they just brown, not burn. Then when they have browned, add oil and salt and stir to coat. Cook an additional 5 minutes until completely soft. (This is a much faster way to caramelize onions when they are used as a topping, but don’t do this for recipes such as French onion soup- they just won’t be the same!)
Grill Portobellos and Onions
- Gently toss portobellos and onions in 2 tablespoons of olive oil and 1 teaspoon salt. Heat a cast iron grill pan until super hot, cook until you have great dark grill marks on each side, about 3 minutes per side.
- In food processor, add almonds, dates, onions, jalapeno, BBQ, garlic, beans, cumin and olive oil. Process until it becomes a chunky paste. Add portobellos, grilled onions, arugula, and parsley. Pulse until combined, leaving chunks of the final ingredients visible.
- Taste mixture, add salt to your liking.
- Transfer to bowl, stir in oats and eggs. Add breadcrumbs until the mix holds well together in a patty, you want it to stick well together but not be so dry and dense that you end up with a hockey puck burger.
- Test consistency and flavor. Since we’re using whole foods that vary from item to item, we can adjust before we cook the final batch. Form a mini patty and cook in a nonstick pan. Falling apart? Add more oats, a little at a time. Need more salt? Add some. Not spicy enough? Stir in some more finely diced jalapenos.
- When you have your patty right, divide into 8 equal portions and form into firm patties.
- Heat 2 tablesppons olive oil in a large nonstick pan on medium heat. Add patties (You may have to work in batches depending on the size of your pan). Cook for about 5 minutes on each side, until golden crust forms on outside.
- Toast your buns. Butter one side and place Swiss cheese slice on the other side of the brioche buns, then bake face up for about 3 minutes in a 350 degree oven, until lightly toasted on cut side and cheese just starting to melt on edges.
- Spread Mayonnaise on buttered side.
- Divide your toppings into 8 portions.
- Top each bun with arugula, then the patty, then the onion, then the roasted tomato, then the avocado, then put the top of the bun on. Slice in half and serve!
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