• 03Aug

    From Chef Michael Kiss of the Whole Foods in Arlington. This is from Tonight’s (7pm) free class.

    Healthy lifestyle isn’t always fun and granola, sometimes we get little hankerings for something familiar and kinda bad. Don’t we love hamburgers? We also like the feeling of empowerment when we stay true to what our bodies want and go for the veggie burger, even though what is inside the box isn’t very appealing. Mystery veg isn’t any better than mystery meat, that’s all I am saying.

    Well, today is the day we say NO to the frostbitten hockey puck of bland flavorless pseudo-food patty and say YES to a big beautiful healthy burger that we made with all natural whole foods. It will be a day that when we sit down next to those omnivores, they will look at our buns in envy.

    Anatomy of a basic veggie burger
    The truth is there isn’t a lot to a veggie burger as far as the basic binding medium. The art of the whole thing is to fill up the binder with lots interesting flavors and textures so the burger has highlights and appeal. Without the veggie fillers the binder alone would be like a dense pasty savory cookie. So go crazy with the veg folks, and remember that is where you can really fine tune your nutrition too.

    Basic veggie burger
    Makes 10 to 12 burger patties
    1 Can black beans drained
    1 Can diced tomatoes
    1 C. chopped carrot
    1 clove garlic
    ½ C. chopped onion
    1 ½ C. chopped fresh vegetables or frozen is fine too
    2 C. Instant oatmeal
    Salt and pepper to taste

    Pre heat oven to 400 f.
    In a food processor puree the beans, tomatoes, and carrots garlic and onions with a few pulses. Next mix in by hand the oats and vegetables, season with salt and pepper. Let stand for 10 minutes then form into patties and bake on a parchment lined baking sheet for 8 to 10 minutes. Let cool and freeze in zip lock bags for later

    So this is the basic burger, and this alone is way better than morning-boca-gaden-crud, but basic isn’t how we roll foodies, hamburger roll…

    Let’s get funky and have something crazy good for dinner.

    How do you think of variations and themes?
    Sometimes I have an idea and just wait for the right ingredient to fall in place, sometimes I find an exciting ingredient and try to work it into a recipe. And once in a while, when the mood is right and the stars are aligned and all is well in the world I make up a funny name and make the food reflect the name…tonight is one of those nights.

    So for tonight’s variation:
    The Rhinestone Ninja
    I added shitake mushrooms and edamame for the vegetable and seasoned with gomasio, ginger and soy sauce
    I changed the onions to scallions (see flexibility-an onion is an onion)

    That’s just the burger, but what about the toppings?
    To fill out the Rhinestone Ninja, let’s have fun with the toppings. Foodies the topping enhance the burger but also it is an opportunity to expand the nutrition of the meal by getting in some extra vegetables in creative ways. Way better than lumping out the mustard and ketchup.

    Gitano slaw
    For 4 burgers
    1 C. shredded carrot
    1 C. shredded daikon radish
    1 tsp poppy seeds
    2 Tbs. seasoned rice wine vinegar
    ¼ tsp toasted sesame oil
    ½ tsp honey
    Mix all ingredients together and let stand for a few minutes

    Cowboy karate chop sauce
    For 4 burgers
    3 Tbs. veganaise
    1 tsp or more to taste siracha hot sauce
    ½ tsp lime juice

    Whole sprigs of cilantro to finish the burgers

    Foodies, I want you to make some amazing veggie burgers this week, Have fun get the family and friends involved. Having a healthy lifestyle is a journey, enjoying a meal with people we love is a destination.

    Eat well!

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