A burger for a wholesome, healthy, satisfying meal. A sandwich or a burger is probably the most common lunch idea. They are available everywhere and there are million ways to do them.
Ranging from the simple cheese sandwich to a mega layered burger – the kind which gives your jaws a tough time, there are endless varieties. I don’t think I need to elaborate anymore. While we rarely get the ready made burger patties, we do quite a bit of sandwiches ourselves – mostly homemade ones. Different days, different kinds depending on the mood, time and cravings. This was created on a day when I craved mushrooms and wanted to do something different with them. Besides the daughter needs variety for her lunch. Gone are the days when she asked for butter and cucumber sandwiches (that phase lasted for 2 whole years), and PBJs. The taste buds have certainly developed and they ask for more.
Mushrooms, almond meal and brown rice are the 3 main ingredients here. The rest can be substituted easily. The spices, herbs are for you to change and experiment with. There is no dairy or meat here. With some whole grain bread and fresh vegetables it was a delightful burger and I will be making it more often.
Mushroom Almond Burger
Ingredients: (makes about 4 burger patties)
- 8-10 button mushrooms or baby portobello/cremini, chopped into small pieces
- 3/4 cup cooked brown rice, make sure it is mushy and sticky
- 6 tablespoons almond meal
- 1 tablespoon flax seed meal
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1/3 cup onion, finely
- red chili flakes
- freshly ground black pepper
- hot sauce – like Sriracha (optional)
- 2 tablespoons roasted sunflower seeds (Optional)
- about 1/2 cup corn meal/all purpose flour/quick oats/semolina (whatever you would want to use) to roll the patties before frying them
- fresh finely chopped thyme (or any other herb you want to use), chopped
- 1 tablespoon oil + oil to shallow fry the burgers
- bread/bun/roll/flat bread
- salad greens + onion + tomato or whatever you want to use in the burger
- spread/pesto/sauce, if you need
- cheese, if you wish for it
Add oil to a flat bottomed pan. Add the chopped herbs, red pepper flakes and the minced garlic. At high heat cook for a minute after the oil heats up and the flakes and the herbs start to sizzle. Add the chopped onions and cook till they are soft and they start to brown at the edges. Add the chopped mushroom, black pepper and salt and cook at high heat till the mushroom releases no more water, about 3-4 minutes. Cool the contents and set aside.
In a big bowl, combine almond meal, flax seed meal, hot sauce and the mushy cooked brown rice. (The rice really needs to be overcooked, wet and sticky as I have used this as the main agent to hold the pieces of the mushroom together.) Mush and mix everything together in the bowl. Let the content rest for about 10 minutes. Add the sunflower seeds, cooked mushrooms and the onions from the pan to this bowl.
Combine everything together again and divide into four equal portions. Take each portion and roll into a carelessly shaped ball (the mix will be chunky, so you won’t be forming perfect shapes here). Flatten the spheres to form the patties (using wet palms helps here).
Place the corn meal/flour/oats in a plate.
Place each patty in the corn meal/oats/flour (whatever you have decided to use), and gently press it down so as to make the flour stick on the patty. Do the same with both sides of the patties. Lay the patties on a plate and cover with cling wrap. Let them chill for at least 20 minutes.
Heat oil in a flat pan and shallow fry the patties, about 3-4 minutes or until golden brown. Flip them over carefully and cook the other side too.
Assemble the burger in a way that pleases you.
I grilled the 9 Grain Rolls that I used, with a drizzle of the Rosemary Infused Olive Oil; used some baby spinach from my garden, lettuce, tomatoes and red onions, and had a hearty lunch. Once DD1 came back from school, she gobbled up the second one and asked from where I got the chicken patties; it tasted nothing familiar. Her eyes popped out when I said it was mushroom, for she does not fancy the “fungi” (that’s what she calls it). At least she fancied the burger for she instructed me to pack this for her school lunch.
The burger patties will stay good in the refrigerator for a couple of days and may be reheated in the microwave/oven or a pan. I have not tried freezing them yet. They are on their way to ITB: September – Mushroom, Nuts and Herbs in the Bag.
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