22 June 2011

beet & brown rice veggie burger

A few years ago, I would have never imagined myself saying this but... we made beet & brown rice veggie burgers and they were incredible. I know... WHAT?! Beets & brown rice don't usually have the crowds clamoring, but I'm convinced that if we didn't eat all of these burgers ourselves, we could have used them to convert a lot of people over to the dark side of weird hippie food. If I had been blindfolded, I wouldn't have even guessed that I was eating beets. The texture was right on, the flavor was awesome and they are made even better by being lightly fried. My only complaint, and it's more of an observation really, is that they were crumbly and a little tough to handle. But that holds true for many homemade veggie burgers, so I wasn't too disappointed.

I know it looks like a slab of raw beef, but it isn't. And while we're on the topic, I'd like to issue a reminder that veggie burgers are generally NOT TRYING TO TASTE LIKE MEAT! Sure, the All American Flame Grilled Boca Burgers are, but the rest of the veggie burger world aims to celebrate the tastes of... wait for it, VEGGIES. So no, these burgers do not taste like ground beef, as much as the photos suggest otherwise. They taste like delicious vegetables and grains.



Beet & Brown Rice Burgers
(from Veggie Burgers Every Which Way by Lukas Volger. My sister showed up at dinner last week with this and I immediately copied down this recipe so I could make a dent in my beet stash.)
Ingredients 
  • 3 beets, ends trimmed
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 small red onion, diced
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 1 1/2 cup red kidney beans
  • 1 cup cooked brown rice
  • 2 tbsp parsley
  • cracked black pepper

Directions
  1. Scrub the beets well and grate them. You don't need to peel them, because peeling sucks. If your brown rice isn't cooked yet, start it now. I hate when the ingredients list says "cooked rice" and I don't notice it until it's too late and my dinner gets thrown off 45 minutes. Frustrating. So don't say I didn't warn you.
  2. Heat 2 tbsp oil in a large skillet and cook onion for 6-8 minutes. Add the beets and salt and cook for 10-12 minutes until completely softened. Add the red wine vinegar and stir, then remove from heat.
  3. In a bowl, mash the beans and then fold in beet mixture, cooked rice, parsley and pepper. Shape into six patties of about 1/2" thickness.
  4. Heat the remaining oil in the skillet and add the patties. Cook for one minute on high then reduce heat and cook for another 2-3 minutes. Flip and finish cooking for about 4 minutes so both sides are nice and crispy.
We served these with lettuce, a slice of cheddar and a smear of Vegenaise on the Freihofer's Country Thins that I got with my free cookies after the Freihofer's Run for Women. I want to reiterate how good these veggie burgers were and how surprised I was by that. Even if you are a beet-skeptic, you should give these a try. Just beware of the beet-juice bloodbath that accompanies the shredding process. It's pretty gory.

4 comments:

  1. love beets. am adding this to my "must try" list!! thanks for the great idea! I planted a bunch of beets in my garden....cant wait!!!

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  2. You MUST try this! They are really outstanding, I was so pumped to find the recipe! The tiny bit of frying at the end gives them such a nice crispiness and crunch.

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  3. I have a serious cheeseburger addiction. Just before I die, I'm going to eat a big juicy cheeseburger (extra pickles and onions), a cold beer, and a slab of chocolate cake. But, they are not so good for my health or waistline (this may be the reason I haven't lost all the baby weight yet). I'm definitely going to give this recipe a try! You are a maestro!

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  4. I made this tonight for dinner and we loved it! Thanks for the recipe! We'll be making this all the time!

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