Completely Board Post #20: Baked Eggplant Burgers

Veg-am's Completely Board - Vegan Month of Food 2014

With just a little over 3-1/2 hours left in Vegan MoFo 2014 here in the eastern US, I’m sitting down to write my final post.  I can’t believe I actually made it to 20.  It was looking a doubtful for a while. With very few exceptions, I’ve been really pleased with the recipes I’ve tried from my Pinterest boards, both the ones I could use as written and the ones I had to convert in some way.  I’m so glad this last one did not disappoint.

What you see here is my original pin with my comment: “I think I need to buy eggplant on my next grocery trip.”

Eggplant Burger Pin

That was over a year ago. I’ve been to the grocery store many times since then.  I’ve even purchased eggplant many times since then, but I had yet to attempt this burger from The Tolerant Vegan. 

I mostly followed the instructions as written.  The only two substitutes I made were cashews in place of pine nuts and gluten free (Food for Life Brown Rice Bread) bread crumbs instead of panko. And I used parchment paper instead of foil.  I think I went a little overboard on the amount of eggplant and I ended up with 5 large burgers instead of 4.  It took a little while longer to make than I want my weeknight meals to take, but I have 4 burgers leftover so it will balance out for other meals later in the week.

This is the burger queen of Mediterranean flavors.  It has it all…eggplant, onion, bell pepper, hummus, beans, garlic and cumin.  Really…how could I not have loved it?

The texture is different from most burgers I’ve had, but it works here.  It was crispy on the outside and creamy on the inside.  Yes, I said creamy.  It was like there was a mix of baba ghanoush and hummus (well, duh there is hummus) in the middle.   I mostly eat burger platters instead of burgers on buns, so I’m not sure how it would hold up in a bun, but the original one seems to have worked just great.

I really enjoyed this burger topped with a lemon tahini sauce and surrounded by a tomato-cucumber-parsley salad (with a tiny bit of that tahini sauce mixed in).

Baked Eggplant Burger Platter

Thanks so much for hanging out with me this month.  I hope you enjoyed being “Completely Board” as much as I did.  Happy end of Vegan MoFo!

Labor Day: Monster “Cheddar”-Stuffed BBQ Black Bean Burgers

Happy Labor Day!  For a lot of us that means a day off from work and the official end of summer.  It also means a day where we’ve traditionally had burgers. So in keeping with my theme, I made these cheddar stuffed burgers.  For an extra flavor punch, I bbq’d them up (thanks to my sister, Brenda, for the idea!). These are a softer texture burger since I didn’t use any gluten or soy in them.  My mom, who isn’t veg, isn’t used to the texture of a non-meat burger, but she said it was really good.

Served here with homemade slaw and sweet tater tots, and some garden-fresh tomato, these burgers are a great way to send summer on its way.  Now, if the temperatures would just follow suit.

Monster "Cheddar"-Stuffed Black Bean Burger |  Veg-am

Monster “Cheddar”-stuffed BBQ Black Bean Burgers
(makes 4)

Please note: These are really big burgers so if you want bun-size burgers, you might want to make 5 instead. But I don’t particularly like softer burgers on a bun so I went for the big size.

2 tsp extra virgin olive oil, plus more for frying the burgers
1/2 medium red onion, chopped
2 carrots, grated
2 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
1-1/2 cups black beans, cooked (equivalent of one can drained)
1-1/2 cups cooked brown rice
1/4 cup BBQ sauce (bottled or homemade, just use your favorite)
3/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup parsley leaves, lightly packed
1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper
4 oz cheddar style wedge Daiya, cut in small rectangles (about 1×1.5″, 1/8″ thick, you’ll break them more anyway)

In a large skillet, on medium-high heat,  saute the onion & carrots in the 2 tsp EVOO until the onion is translucent, about 7 minutes.  Add the garlic and cook for another minute, stirring often so the garlic doesn’t stick and burn.  Place all other ingredients, except Daiya, in a food processor with the onion mixture.  Process until well blended, but not smooth.  You should still see bean pieces and some rice grains.

BBQ Black Bean Burger Mix

At this point, you could go ahead and start forming the burgers, but if you have the time, the mixture is a little easier to work with after letting it sit, covered, in the refrigerator for about an hour.

Divide the burger mixture in 8 equal sized balls.  Working on waxed paper, make 4 thin patties (remember they’ll only be about 1/2 the thickness of the finished burger) from 4 of the balls of burger mixture.   Top each with 1/4 of the Daiya pieces, being careful not to get too close to the edge.

Monster Cheddar-Stuffed BBQ Black Bean Burgers - putting the Daiya in the middle | Veg-am

Using one of the remaining balls of burger mixture, make a patty the same size as the bottom patties.  Lay the patty over the Daiya on a burger on the wax paper to cover the cheddar.  Seal the edges by pushing them together.  At this point it will probably look more like a little mound than a burger patty, so push the burger from the top to make it look like a thick patty.  This helps set the cheddar into the burger and will help it to cook more evenly.  Do this to all four burgers.  (If you end up with a little cheddar peeking out of the top, just pinch a bit of burger mixture from the side of the patties and fill in the spot, then reshape the side a little.  It’s not a science, just make sure they’re relatively flat on top and bottom and that the cheese is enclosed.)

Preheat a large skillet brushed with olive oil to medium heat. Place two burgers (or all 4 if you have room) into the skillet, cook 6 minutes on one side until nicely browned.  Brush a thin coat of olive oil on the top and then gently flip the burger to cook 6 minutes on the second side.  Repeat with remaining burgers. Serve.

I would normally serve these without cutting it in half to put it on the plate, but for this post, I wanted you to see the ooey gooey goodness.  YUM.

Monster "Cheddar"-Stuffed BBQ Black Bean Burger | Vegam




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