Sunday, June 1, 2014

Rainy day cooking- vegetarian style (veggie burger and quick chickpea salad)

It's been raining off and on today, and so I have been doing a little of this and that inside.  A  little cleaning, a little clothes washing and I decided to look for something different to make for lunch.  My friend and coworker, Jen, made a KICK ASS tabbouleh a couple days ago, and I have been thinking about it ever since.  I was sort of looking for a grain based salad, but found a chickpea version instead.  AND I think it was a winner!  Plus I wanted to make my own veggie burger, I like the frozen ones,  but want to find one that can be a fast go to recipe.  The one I did here was good, but a little dry when grilled, I have to figure out a fix for it.  The flavor was good though.
Well isn't this a busy little picture!?!  

So first up Sweet Potato Black Bean Burger- adapted from a recipe found on the Hummusapien blog.   I looked at several other black bean burger recipes and they want  you to precook things, or prechill, and all this other nonsense.  I want something that you can throw together and cook.  Period. As per usual, I never seem to have exactly what a recipe calls for.  So there are several substitutions from the original recipe.

First up, I subbed in some pulverized oats for the flaked whole grain cereal (I don't eat cereal and the MA eats Honey Nut Cheerios- not the best idea for a veggie burger, I'd guess), and since I didn't want to drag out the food processor, I wiped out the coffee grinder and used that!

Next, I had no jalapeno so I put in some cayenne pepper for some heat, and I used 2 eggs instead of an egg and an egg white.  I mean seriously, what the heck am I going to do with that left over yolk.

Pulverized rolled organic oats

Cook and mash this dude

Chili powder, cayenne, cumin plus not pictured: smoked paprika

Mix all that stuff together

I decided to stick on a  greased grill pan and grill.  
 The recipe also calls for baking- and I opted for the slow grill route.  I really don't want to heat the kitchen up baking a veggie burger or 3.

The taste of this was good, but I would add way more of all the spices- I would prefer it a bit spicier!

Sweet Potato Black Bean Burger

1 large sweet potato, cooked and mashed: about 1 cup
1 cup of rolled oats- roughly pulverized
1/2 onion, chopped
1 can black beans- rinsed and drained
2 eggs
1 clove garlic, minced
salt and pepper
dash or two of cayenne
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/4 tsp smoked paprika

Mix the whole thing up and shape into patties.  Bake in oven at 350 for 30 minutes or grill in a pan on low for 15 min or so.

I put avocado, onion and dijon on mine!  I'd put a squeeze of lime and hot sauce on the next time

This made 5 good sized burgers

The chickpea salad was something I had pinned on Pinterest at some point and is from Two Peas and Their Pod.

I was searching for something grain based, but this chickpea recipe sounded good and I had the avocado and the feta!!!  SCORE

I added my own spin to it when, I did not have any cilantro, by adding some fresh basil and then threw in some cherry tomatoes for color.  It is really so good.  I love lime, so that as the only major flavoring to pull it together was fine with me.

Tomato, onion and basil

Mix in the feta, drained chickpeas and diced avocado plus squeeze lime over the whole thing

The flavors in this salad are so good together.  I can see this stuffed inside a pita as well, or scooped on top of a lettuce salad.  Or mashed up a little and put in a sandwich- as was discussed in the original recipe.  I'll take the basil over the cilantro anytime.

Chickpea, Avocado and Feta Salad

1can chickpeas, rinsed and drained (I had my can of chickpeas in the frig so it was cold)
1 or 2 avocados, diced
1- 2 Tablespoons  onion, finely diced
2 or 3 Tablespoons chopped fresh basil
8 - 10 cherry tomatoes
1/3 - 1/2 cup feta
Juice of one lime
salt and pepper to taste

Combine and enjoy.  

This will be something that I come back to again.  I loved it and had to stop myself from eating the entire bowl.  It was that good.  

Quite an enjoyable way to spend a rainy Sunday!  Hope you are finding your joy too.

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