Thai Veggie Burgers

cilantro

The Hubs and I decided last week that enough was enough. The clutter was driving me crazy. We bemoaned our own failure to hang up pictures and curtains. We succeed in keeping our kitchen clean,  but when it comes to clutter, we are both guilty of letting things accumulate in the living room.  So what do you do when you are ashamed of your filth? Invite people over! We decided that we needed a deadline and a potluck was just the enforcer.

While I did prepare an unhealthy potato salad,  (who can turn down a special request?) we also served organic, grass-fed hamburgers and homemade veggie burgers. Our guests brought all sorts of omnomery including homemade ice cream (avocado lime for the adventurous, chocolate and strawberry for the faint of heart) and corn bean salad. I planned on taking all these cool pictures, but I got stuck at my job late and guests were actually beating me to my house- so I had to kick it into gear and leave the camera behind.

The veggie burger came from my favorite food blog, Cookie + Kate.  I love my usual lentil burgers, but turns out lentils give the hubs stomach aches, so I was excited to try this new recipe.

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I made a few substitutions, basically because I couldn’t find all the ingredients in the recipe.  The recipe called for millet, but my grocery did not carry it so I picked up some sorghum flour. I had no idea if this substitution would work because when I re-read the recipe at home I realized the recipe called for millet… not millet flour. And to cook the millet before adding it to the mix. When I added it to water it became this sticky substance like bread dough. (Big surprise, right? It is flour after all )  Was the millet for absorbency’s sake or to act as a binder?! Should I use the dough or add the flour straight to the mix? Should I use bulgar instead of the sorghum flour? Well, I decided binder was best and went ahead and boiled the sorghum because all the other ingredients were cooked. (The burgers don’t get very long on the heat source so I thought best to give some pre-cooking to the flour.) The burgers were edible and my one vegetarian was very gracious and praised the outcome, but I was not satisfied with the result. However the frozen leftovers are surprisingly tasty thrown on the skillet or grill. Click on over and try the Sweet Potato Black Bean Burgers from Cookie + Kateespecially if you have access to milet. 

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I would have posted more pictures  of the sweet potato black bean burger, but like I said, I had to scurry once I got home.

While I wasn’t super stoked to serve my experiment to hungry guests, the gracious vegetarian (is that a cookbook name or what?!) said that she had a thai burger recipe that she adored, to which I replied, “Gimmie!”

I made just a few adjustments to the recipe because I like peanuts in my thai and wanted to amp up the health benefits with tumeric. This burger reminds me of a peanut noodle bowl at a local restaurant that’s hard to pass up. Shredding the carrots by hand was probably the longest step, but a food processor or salad shooter would make fast work of this task. The health benefits of carrots make the job well worth the effort. Falcarinol, a natural pesticide found in carrots that prevents the growth of fungal diseases, is responsible for the root vegetable’s anti-cancer benefits and anti-inflammatory properties and can prevent red blood cells from clumping together, helping to promote heart health.  Of course you probably already know about all the beta-carotene, which the liver converts to vitamin A, that carrots boast.  And it’s true, vitamin A is good for your peepers! Lack of vitamin A can lead to cataracts, macular degeneration, and dry eyes.  And all the ingredients can be found all year long, making this a perfect winter meal.

 

shredded carrots

While these are veggie burgers, they are not vegan. You can use an egg substitute or some other binder if you desire. These burgers have a beautiful golden color due to the ample supply of carrots and tumeric. However I must advise against making these the day before any big event as my fingernails are a ting discolored from handling the mixture.

thai veggie burger mix

Thai Veggie Burgers

adapted from Veggie Burgers Every Which Way

  • olive oil
  • 1 bunch of scallions (green onions)
  • 5 cloves of garlic
  • 1 + 1/2 tablespoons of freshly grated ginger
  • 4 cups grated carrot (about 4 or 5 large carrots)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon tumeric
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 2 egg whites
  • 2 TBSP natural peanut butter
  • 1 + 1/2 tablespoons peanuts
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1/3 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1/2 cup Panko bread crumbs
Optional toppings:
Arugula
Avocado or Guacamole
Pickles
If you’re in the market for a better bun (or any type of bread), I recommend Ezekiel bread.
Directions:
Begin mise en place: peel and shred the carrots, mince the garlic, finely slice the green onions, chop the cilantro, and grate the ginger. Measure out all your spices in cup.
1) Preheat oven to 375. Heat a dash of olive oil (about 1 TBSP) in large pan. Add the scallions and cook for just a minute until fragrant. Add the garlic, ginger, carrots, salt, coriander, curry powder, and cinnamon. Turning often, cook for 6 – 8 minutes until the carrots are just softened.
2) I like using my stand mixer for this, but some elbow grease and a regular mixing bowl will do just fine. Whisk together the egg whites, peanut butter, and lemon juice. Stir in the carrot mixture, cilantro, and Panko (bread crumbs). Allow to sit for about 5 – 10 minutes so the bread crumbs can absorb some of the liquid. Shape into 4 – 5 patties.  Make them a little more like a ball than you want your end product to be so you can pat down the patty once it’s in your skillet. These can fall apart easily, so this trick helps you transfer to the pan.
3) Add a little more olive oil to your skillet and cook the patties until browned on each side (about 4 – 6 minutes per side). Keep an eye on them because it doesn’t take long to go from underdone to burnt. Transfer the patties to a baking sheet and bake for 12 minutes. I used  a silpat to ensure the burgers wouldn’t get stuck to my pan, but since they are already fried, I don’t think you would have much trouble skipping the silpat or parchment paper.
carrot burger frying
My apologies on the poor photo, I ran out of daylight and buns!
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