Purposeful Cooking

One thing that gives me purpose is cooking plant-based meals. I have discovered so many delicious new ingredients! An added bonus is that I actually like the taste of the food and that it makes my body happy (and I have plenty of energy).

What began as a mom’s way to ensure Miss Herbivore got the nutrients she needed has turned into a way of life for me. The more I learn the more I embrace this lifestyle – it’s good for me and the environment!

I have experimented with MANY veggie burger recipes. I am sharing my 2 favorites here — neither have beans in them! They do take some ingredients  you might not have on hand so make a plan for these. One great thing about them is that both recipes makes a plenty and they freeze great!

Ann Hodgman’s Vegan Burgers from her cookbook —Vegan Food for the Rest of Us – Recipes Even You Will Love – have a long list of ingredients and a few steps but it’s totally worth the effort.

Vegan Burgers

7 Tbsp vegetable oil                                                   1/4 cup ketchup
2 large onions, chopped                                           3 Tbsp white miso
2 pounds white or cremini mushrooms,              1 ½ Tbsp dried basil
trimmed and sliced                                                  1 tsp freshly ground pepper
4 cups cooked black rice, (cook in                          1 tsp dried thyme
vegetable stock if possible)                                      1 tsp liquid smoke
1/3 cup soy sauce                                                        1/2 tsp Accent (optional)
1/4 cup tomato paste                                                  3 cups vital wheat gluten

  1. Heat  a large skillet over medium-high heat, then add 1/4 cup fo the oil. When the oil shimmers, add the onions and cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until well browned, about 15 minutes. Transfer the onions to a big bowl. Set the skillet aside; don’t bother to wash it.
  2. Working in batches, puree the mushrooms in the food processor.
  3. Add the mushrooms to a big bowl. Then add everything else except the wheat gluten and mix well with your hand. When everything is blended, sprinkle the wheat gluten evenly over the mix. IMMEDIATELY and vigorously mix in the gluten, again using your hands. Gluten sets up almost instantly when it comes in contact with moisture, so work fast — and as thoroughly — s you can. The mixture will very quickly change texture.
  4. Wipe out the skillet. Heat it over medium-high heat, then add the remaining 3 tablespoons of oil. when it shimmers, gently set the patties you are making for supper into the skillet. Gently because they do fall apart easily. Once your burgers are in the skillet be careful with them.
  5. Cook the burgers until the undersides are dark brown and crispy. Flip carefully and repeat. Serve with whatever you like on burgers!
  6. You can also shape in to patties and bake at 350°F for 20 minutes and then freeze leftovers.

Leftover patties can be frozen and reheated in the microwave. Best done in a skillet or the oven.  (she hasn’t tried to grill them. I like the way they turn out in the cast iron skillet and the oven).

Millet Burgers

This recipe is circa the mid-1980’s, from a vegetarian restaurant that is in my hometown. They were a favorite of mine and the local newspaper ran an article about the restaurant that included this recipe. My mom wrote it down for me and I still use it. I thought it would be more fun to share like my mom wrote it.

Millet Burgers
millet burgers2

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