Bolted Arugula Burger

On Memorial Day I tried my hand at making my first veggie burger. Generally, when I think of veggie burgers, I think of hyper-processed soy burgers that I wouldn’t touch with a ten foot pole. That’s why I was so excited to attempt my own burgers. Rarely do I follow recipes, but with the exception of substituting basil for cilantro, because I didn’t have fresh cilantro on hand.The main components of the burger are rice, lentils and bread crumbs. Not to mention that the recipe is completely vegan, making it edible for people of all culinary backgrounds.

Here is the recipe I followed:

Ingredients

1 Tsp Salt

3/4 Cup Brown Rice (I used red rice)

1/2 Cup Lentils

3 Cups Mix of Chopped Cilantro (or Fresh Basil) and Arugula (including Flowers)

1 Garlic Clove

1-inch Piece Ginger Root, peeled and sliced

1 Carrot, grated

1 Red Bell Pepper, finely Chopped

2 Whole Wheat Hamburger, broken into bits

Salt and Freshly Cracked Black Pepper

2 Tbsp Extra-Virgin Olive Oil

Whole Wheat Buns to serve with the Burgers

Instructions

  1. Bring 2 cups water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add the salt and rice, reduce the heat, and let simmer, covered, for 20 minutes. Add the lentils and let simmer, covered, for another 20 minutes. The rice and lentils should be done when they have absorbed all the water. Uncover the pan and let them cool a  bit.
  2. Meanwhile, combine the cilantro and arugula, garlic and ginger in a food processor, and pulse until the mixture is finely chopped. Transfer to a large bowl, and mix in the carrot and pepper (I used basil).
  3. Transfer the rice and lentils to the food processor, and pulse until the rice becomes sticky but not pureed. Add this to the bowl, scraping out all the rice from the food processor with a spatula.
  4. Pulse the hamburger buns in the processor to make bread crumbs. Add the bread crumbs to the large bowl and stir well with a spoon. Season the mixture with salt and freshly cracked black pepper.
  5. Using your hands, form six cakes from the burger mixture, and drizzle olive oil onto the patties to make them more cohesive.
  6. Either grill the burgers on a charcoal grill or cook in a skillet over medium heat with olive oil. Cook until they brown. I grilled mine until they developed a crispy outside.
  7. Put the burgers on buns and what toppings you desire. I topped them with fresh arugula leaves.

These burgers were so delicious I will definitely make them again. They’re extremely flavorful, aromatic and not just restricted to vegetarians, as most of the guests at the BBQ wanted a taste. With the leftover burgers, I mixed them into salads and other lunches throughout the week.

Recently I made a cooking playlist on my Itunes and a couple of the songs include:

Ms. Jackson- Outkast

Trying- Katie Gray

Soul Shaker- Sean Hayes

Afro Blue- Robert Glasper ft. Erykah Badu

-Ray

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