It has been awhile since I made a burger or had a sandwich. The last time was when I made Edamame and Carrot Burgers served with Almond Butter which was also featured as a guest post in another blog. Well I guess after that I have been on a binge. We had family visiting, went on a holiday, new years, had some other guests over..you get the flow now! All this meant..no time to exercise. Ya right, as if I needed an excuse to get out of it. 😉 Well yes, I am not a fitness freak, however I like to cook and eat healthy food on most days and love to cheat during weekends. Unfortunately my exercise bit had reduced and it was just high time that I got back in to the routine. Today is that day. Do I hear bells ringing? Rather Dumbbells!! Err, sorry about this lame joke.
Anyways, since I got back to my workout routine today, I decided to make a quick burger for myself to keep me honest with my diet. I began the day on a sweet note. It was Cherry Vanilla Smoothie for breakfast packed with proteins. I had some ciabatta buns in the fridge, thus came the idea to make burgers for lunch. I quickly whipped up a creamy green chutney using some almonds, cilantro, ginger paste, green chillies, a garlic clove, cumin seeds and salt to use as a spread. I wanted to think more on the kind of burger to make so I decided to unblock my mind and do some Suryanamaskar first.
What is Suryanamaskar you may ask. Also known as Sun salutation, is ideally done facing the early morning sun, helps our body to soak in its benefits — sun rays are a rich source of vitamin D and helps to strengthen our bones and also helps to clear our vision. The Suryanmaskar has many benefits and if done regularly can not only help you lose flab but can also help you combat diseases. This asana, apart from improving one’s posture, also gives a proper workout to the body and so helps in losing unwanted flab. I have learnt the right way to do it from my dance teacher in India. You can check online videos or your Yoga instructor on how to perform this correctly. Suryanamaskar – is very effective. I know of people who do 100 Suryanamaskars in one sitting. I am still at 20 a day. This calms me down, channelizes my energies and unlocks my creativity.
After my workout, I somehow just knew what I had to make today. I went and put the chana dal (Bengal gram split lentil) to boil along with a pinch of Homemade Turmeric Powder. I was making Lentils & Black Rice Burger! And I just followed my instincts and did what my mind was telling me to do. This recipe is very instinctive. I wanted to give the burgers a nutty feel to it so first i prepared a coarse paste of almonds, garlic, ginger, green chillies and lime juice. I also cooked the black rice simultaneously. So when the rice and the lentils were done, I added them all to a mixing bowl.
Gave this mixture a good mix. The mixture was still not binding well as I had no plans of adding any flour or bread crumbs. Using a masher, I mashed the mixture well till I could form burger patties with it.
I prefer doing this when making burgers, I always keep the mixture in the fridge for 20-25 minutes so that they set well, are easy to cook and do not break easily. I shaped the mixture into square patties and left them in the fridge. Later, grilled them with little oil. Do not keep flipping them. Suggest you cook one side for a good 2-3 minutes and then flip to cook the other side. This reduces any chance of breakage. I use this grill pan – Calphalon Contemporary Hard-Anodized Aluminum Nonstick Cookware, Square Grill Pan, 11-inch, Black and love it. Its pretty sturdy, grills evenly and is easy to clean.
The burger patties are ready. Now to assemble the burger, toast the ciabatta buns and spread some green chutney on each side of the bread. Add a burger Patti and any sliced veggies on one side. I placed onion and beetroot slices. Sprinkle cheese and add any hot sauce on top if you wish. Lastly place a lettuce on top.
Close the burger and take a bite! This Lentils & Black Rice Burger is delicious, loaded with proteins for the vegetarian flock, plus black rice brings in its own benefits – is high in nutritional value and is a source of iron, vitamin E, and antioxidants (more than in blueberries). The bran hull (outermost layer) of black rice contains one of the highest levels of anthocyanin antioxidants found in food. By the way, I have used black rice in the past and am very impressed with the results. Check Cauliflower and Black Rice Fritters or Cheesy Black Rice Mini Paratha (Stuffed Flat Bread) recipe.
Lentils & Black Rice Burger
- 2 ciabatta buns
- 1 cup chana dal - Green Bengal Gram
- 1 cup cooked black rice
- 1 red bell pepper - chopped
- 1 large onion - chopped
- 2 tbsp schezwan sauce
- 1/2 cup grated Parmesan
- 1/2 cup cilantro - chopped
- To be ground to a coarse paste
- 5-6 almonds
- 3-4 green chillies
- 4-5 garlic cloves
- 1 tbsp. ginger paste
- For assembly
- Green chutney
- Hot sauce
- Veggie slices - onion, tomatoes, beetroot
- Lettuce leaves
- Prepared a coarse paste of almonds, garlic, ginger, green chillies and lime juice. Cook the black rice simultaneously as per instructions on the pack. When the rice and the lentils were done, add them all to a mixing bowl.
- After giving it a good mix, add the red bell pepper, salt, grated Parmesan and schezwan sauce. Then add in the chopped onions and cilantro.
- Give this mixture a good mix. To bind this mixture, using a masher, mash it well till you can form burger patties with it.
- I prefer doing this when making burgers, I always keep the mixture in the fridge for 20-25 minutes so that they set well, are easy to cook and do not break easily. I shaped the mixture into square patties and left them in the fridge. Later, grill them with little oil. Do not keep flipping them. Suggest you cook one side for a good 2-3 minutes and then flip to cook the other side. This reduces any chance of breakage.
- The burger patties are ready. Now to assemble the burger, toast the ciabatta buns and spread some green chutney on each side of the bread. Add a burger patti and any sliced veggies on one side of the bread. I used onion and beetroot slices. Sprinkle cheese and add any hot sauce on top if you wish. Place a lettuce leaf on top. Close the burger and take a bite!
So overall this seems to be a very good vegetarian burger option for all of us. I am so glad that I made this today. I wish they served this in restaurants. I mean the vegetarian options for burgers at restaurants suck! They only have a black bean option in most of these places. Hopefully someday someone will add more innovative options for us vegetarians on their menu..sigh! For now, I am content in making them at home and enjoying these delicious burgers while I watch Grey’s Anatomy!
If you do try this recipe, please do share it with your friends on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest. This will keep me motivated to develop more interesting recipes. Click a pic and post it with the hashtag #cookiliciousveg . I would love to see your pictures on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter!
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