I've been following Rachael Ray for a long time now... and for a girl who claims to be "Queen of Burgers" and never had a veggie burger until now... I wanna say - it's about time!! I was totally excited while watching her show and she had veggie burgers on the docket to make at the end. Yay! I really like the beef-free bean burgers... but wanted another stanby. This for sure is a keeper. And yes, I did slurge and got the provolone cheese for it.
There's a lot of steps, so I was in my right mind to go ahead and double the recipe and freeze half for later. It uses couscous or quinoa and lentils, so is a great way to use leftovers.
I didn't make the ketchup this go round, time was not on my side. Which looks really, really good and would add even more flavor. But I added avocado and sprouts and some natural ketchup. Yum! Shayne really liked them too. You have to focus on the fact that they're not a hamburger sub, just something a little like them but healthy for you!
For the Ketchup:
1 cup tomato sauce
Salt and pepper
1 clove crushed garlic
3 tablespoons aged balsamic vinegar
1 1/2 teaspoons light brown sugar
1 teaspoon dried oregano
For the Burgers:
3 tablespoons EVOO – Extra Virgin Olive Oil, divided
1 small carrot, chopped
1 small onion, chopped
12 cremini mushrooms, chopped
2 tablespoons fresh thyme
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
Salt and pepper
A small handful dried mushrooms, all porcini or mixed
2 1/2 cups cooked brown lentils
1 1/2 cups cooked quinoa (for nuttier burgers) or cooked cold couscous (for softer burgers)
1 cup drained chickpeas (I used black beans)
1/4 cup toasted pine nuts or sliced almonds
1/4 cup currants or chopped raisins (omitted, too scared to mess 'em up)
1 egg (For a vegan burger, omit -- be gentle when flipping burgers so they don't fall apart)
6 slices Provolone cheese
Ciabatta or other crusty rolls, split and lightly toasted
Arugula dressed lightly with lemon juice and EVOO (i used sprouts)
Combine ketchup ingredients in a small pot and bring to a bubble. Reduce heat to low and simmer to thicken to the consistency of ketchup, 15-20 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat a tablespoon EVOO in a skillet over medium to medium-high heat. Add carrot, onions and mushrooms, and sauté to tender. Add thyme and garlic, season with salt and pepper, cook a minute or 2 more then turn off heat and cool.
To a food processor bowl, add a few pieces of dried mushrooms. Process to finely chop then add lentils, quinoa or couscous, chickpeas, nuts and raisins. Season with salt and pepper and add cooled, cooked vegetables. Pulse until well combined. Add egg and pulse a few more times. Form 6 patties.
Heat remaining 2 tablespoons EVOO in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add patties and cook 5-6 minutes. Flip burgers, cook 2-3 minutes more, add cheese and tent pan with tin foil to melt cheese, 1-2 minutes. Serve on rolls with greens and Italian ketchup.
a Rachael Ray recipe