Last night my younger (non-vegan) cousin stayed over, so I decided to have a girl’s evening with her and prepared a healthier version of the typical South African Friday night fare – burgers, chips and homemade vegan chocolate milkshakes.
These veggie lentil burgers were inspired by Heather Nauta’s recipe: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UzAB96CXHUc
I have made them a few times before as is, but decided to adapt them slightly because I found that the taste of wholewheat flour didn’t quite appeal to me in this particular recipe. When adapting recipes, I always have this fear of somehow failing horribly and ending up with in inedible, unappealing mess, but last night I decided to take the risk and boy did it pay off! These burger patties hold together well, cooked nicely and taste great served hot or when eaten cold the next day. I had some of the leftovers for lunch on a slice of wholewheat bread and a drizzle of Macadamia nut butter (yes – you can do that!). You can even prepare them in advance, fry them and freeze for later use.
I chose to serve these burgers on white Portuguese rolls (mainly because my cousin is only 9 years old and, being new to vegan cuisine, I didn’t want to risk putting her off health food by the unfamiliar taste and texture of seeded whole grain buns), topped with sliced avocado, fresh pineapple and sweet chili sauce. To make this recipe even healthier, serve on wholewheat rolls or toasted rye bread. I also made some delicious grilled sweet potato chips to serve on the side.
After nervously watching my cousin take her first bite, unsure of how she would react, and then breathing a sigh of relief as she proceeded to devour the rest of it, I am proud to announce that this meal is 100% kiddie approved! Success!
SUMMER WEEKEND VEGGIE BURGERS
Makes 10 medium-sized patties
- 1 cup black lentils, dry measure
- 2 cups cold water
- 1 1/4 cup oat flour
- 3 medium carrots, grated
- 1/2 large onion, chopped
- 2 tbsp sunflower seeds, toasted
- 1-2 tsp fresh chopped garlic (depending on taste)
- 2 tbsp Worcester sauce
- 2 tbsp cumin
- 2 tbsp coriander
- ground sea salt and pepper to taste (I like using a lot of pepper)
- 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
- Avocado oil
- Bread rolls of choice
- Fresh pineapple slices
- Sliced avocado
- Sweet chili sauce
- After rinsing them thoroughly, add the lentils and 2 cups of water to a small pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, allowing to simmer for 30-40 minutes or until tender.
- Meanwhile, prepare the oat flour by adding 1 cup of oats (I used Tiger Large Flake Oats) to a blender and pulsing until the oats turn into flour.
- In a dry pan, toast the sunflower seeds for a few minutes until golden brown. Set aside.
- Using 1 tsp of coconut or avocado oil, fry the onions and garlic in a small pan until the onions are translucent. Add salt and pepper.
- Once the lentils are cooked, drain the water and set aside. In a large mixing bowl, mix the onions, garlic, carrots and sunflower seeds together.
- Next add the lentils, mashing them with a potato masher and fork until the majority of them are broken and soft.
- Add the spices, Worcester sauce and half the oat flour and stir through well. You may now start using your hands to mix everything together. As you mix, keep adding oat flour until the mixture binds well (if it can roll into a ball easily, you are on the right track).
- Form the burger patties, ensuring that they are not too thick, otherwise they will not cook all the way through (I got 10 medium sized patties out of this batch)
- Heat 2 tsp of avocado oil in a medium sized pan and fry the burger patties for 6-8 minutes on the one side, then flip and fry for another 5-8 minutes on the other side.
- Serve on buns, topped with avocado, pineapple and sweet chili sauce.
I have always been a huge fan of pineapple on my burgers. What are your favourite burger toppings?