About: My daughter has decided that her favourite vegetable is eggplant. I believe this is because she likes eggs (sorta…). I also have been getting eggplants in my lufa farms basket on a regular basis so this worked out nicely. I had a couple of eggplants from a previous dish (Powerhouse eggplant and leek casserole) so decided to give my hand at homemade veggie burgers. Eggplants are a great textured food but aren’t much in the protein department, this is why I opted for a protein rich bread and using chickpea flour instead of other thickening ingredients. For the record although it seems complicated this did not take a long time or a lot of effort to make. we went to the park while the veggies cooled.
1 large (2 smaller) eggplants, peeled and cubed.
4 cloves of garlic, peeled but left whole (I usually cut the top and bottom off)
1 thick slice of large red onion quarter.
1 handful of baby spinach
2 cremini mushrooms
2 tbsp chickpea flour (I use bobs redmill)
3/4 cup breadcrumbs (for gluten-free option use a gluten-free kind. I use a coarse seasoned mix – Pereg classic)
2 tsp oil for frying. I used extra-virgin olive oil
4 whole wheat buns or gluten-free equivalent ( I totally recommend flat buns as they are a little wider than the patty which will squish down as you eat it. they keep everything contained. The kids do not need any help being messy!)
Daiya cheese shreds or cashew cheese (recipe to come!)
thick cut beefsteak Tomatoes
caramelized onions (this makes a decadent burger, I love this)
anything you want!
My kids like ketchup and tomatoes
Heat oven to 450F
in a 2qt roasting pan (I use glass), put eggplant, garlic and onion quarters, roast in 450F oven for approximately 10-15min turn off oven and leave to cool in oven. I find this makes sure everything is soft without overcooking it since you will be frying these burgers after. you can also make this part the day before just store in fridge and I recommend allowing it to warm up a bit before next steps (although in a pinch, totally can be done with it cold)
when cool enough to handle, dump it in a food processor or high speed blender, and add baby spinach and mushrooms (washed and stem removed) and puree until smooth. transfer to a large mixing bowl. there may still be chunks of eggplant, mash them out with a potato masher, now you get to get your hands dirty (and one of the reasons why the mix shouldn’t be hot!) add the chickpea flour and about 1/2 the breadcrumbs (keep both products handy, you may need more) mix well into the eggplant keep adding breadcrumbs and chickpea flour until you get a consistency that forms a nice, not crumbly patty. be careful because if you put too much you cannot undo! I like to use my hands a bit to get everything well moistened.
add oil to frying pan and make sure pan is well coated. heat oil over medium heat then carefully form 4 patties flattened to desired thickness (I like them thick and juicy!) and saute for about 6-7 min per side (until golden). use a large spatula for flipping without breaking!
Serve with oven fried potato wedges and a salad, or like us peas and carrots!
**Freezable when cooked (just needs to be thawed then baked or fried up again, be careful though as the water content changes so does the texture)
***Great leftover cold the next day for lunch
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