My children love just about anything between two pieces of bread, but the word “veggie burger” and its associated ketchup, mustard etc get a particularly joyful reception. But homemade veggie burgers are a pain in the rear, they dont always stick, they require things I do not always have on hand (like my eggplant burgers) they are time consuming to make. I had time to make dinner when I last made these but I didnt feel like stressing over dinner prep and I wanted it to be both adult and kid friendly. I started looking up easy tofu burgers, with the idea that it would be easier than bean based burgers, but they all involved various stages of mashing, processing, forming and breading. I quickly gave up. We love pan-seared tofu around here, and I figured if I cut a tofu brick into 4 I would have 4 thick square tofu steaks, which would be a perfect burger. and from there, I got creative.
I should mention I want to eat this every night this week. This burger can be made vegetarian or vegan, I had the vegetarian version, my kids the vegan one.
Tip: Start the toppings before the tofu, the burger should be the last things prepared.
Avocado and Carmelized Onion and Mushroom Tofu Steak Burgers
1 brick extra firm tofu, pressed to remove excess water
garlic powder, salt and paprika to taste
1-2tbsp Olive oil.
buns of your choice
onions cut in strips about 1/8th in thick,
1-2tbsp safflower oil
water (or white whine)
1 pkg mushrooms, (I used brown)
1 clove garlic – minced
white wine vinegar (or white wine)
1 avocado, lemon juice
shredded Daiya cheese (for vegan/parve/allergy option) or goat cheese (dairy)
Start by preparing the fixings, mushrooms and onions first.
Mushrooms: using a good frying pan on medium-high cook the garlic- I used a non-stick pan here, I wasn’t after the browning juices, but if you use a regular pan you will get the delightful juices up when you add the white wine vinegar after which is great. once garlic is softened add the mushrooms cook until there is no liquid and the mushrooms are greatly reduced, add a few splashes of white wine vinegar, stir and remove from heat.
Onions: heat safflower oil over medium heat, depending on your burner you may even want medium low to keep onions from burning. add onions and cook slowly until a nice crust has built up on the bottom of the pan (use a regular pan, you want this!) and the onions have become very very soft and golden. add water (or wine) to deglaze the pan and the onions will absorb these juices keep adding til you get the consistency you like. I ended up adding a lot of water because I really wanted that juicy sugary melt in your mouth texture. when ready I turn heat to low and add the sauteed mushrooms to the pan, I then use the mushroom pan to prepare the tofu (no washing, let those flavours transfer).
For the Burgers: re-heat pan used for mushrooms and add a bit more olive oil over medium to medium-high heat. cook tofu for approximately 5 min on each side (until a light golden brown). They are done and ready to serve.
Avocado, mash the avocado with a fork and a little lemon juice.
Assemble the burgers:
spread the avocado thickly on the bottom bun, (If avocado isnt your thing, use mayo/nayo here or for added creaminess use both!). Add the tofu steak, onions and mushrooms, a scoop of goat cheese or a sprinkling of daiya cheese a tomato and the top bun.
MAKES A MESS! keep a fork on hand to eat the escapees!