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Sunday, March 21, 2010

I Promise, I'm not a Genius

I get the feeling many people think I only have wild successes in the kitchen. Reading over posts I've written, it is true that I write about recipes that I pulled out of thin air and rocked, recipes I've written and kicked ass on the first try, yada yada. But often, there are meals that don't just pull together as well. The thing is, usually those are things I try on my own--not even for J--and if they don't work, I keep trying until they do!

This happened on Friday. Strangely, via twitter. Super Rockstar Chef Rick Moonen gave me a recipe for a non-soy (aka no Monsanto) veggie burger. Clearly, if you read this, you know I am NOT a vegetarian. Far from it. But I love a good veggie burger. I specifically love an easy to throw on a stove and add to a salad veggie burger, like Morningstar Farms. But ever since viewing Food, Inc., I've been hugely struggling with the purchase and consumption of genetically-modified soy products.  Seriously. I grapple with this issue weekly. And 50% of the time, I remain strong. And 50%, well...I cave. So when I asked Chef Moonen for a recipe (and he got back to me within hours) I was super excited to try it!

His recipe called for 1 C almonds, 1 C sunflower seeds, 8 stalks of celery, scallions, onions, parsley, cilantro, lemon, garlic, and tahini. I threw all of this into the food processor (with a can of chickpeas, to add some more protein) and whirled it around until it came to what I considered a decent consistency. I added salt and pepper, and some Sriracha (yum!) and heated up a skillet with some olive oil. The taste of the mixture was downright overwhelmingly delicious--so I was super excited!

When I threw two patties into the oil, I had really high hopes. But when I (ahem) "flipped' the patties, one fell apart pretty smoothly, and the other managed to flip decently. After another few minutes, I pulled both burgers off the heat. Neither of them managed to stay together very well--sad, but true. So I took the best of the two patties, broke it apart and chucked it in my salad. Like I said, the flavor was awesome!

I saved the rest of the mixture in a container and plan to address it tomorrow. I'm thinking of a binder--perhaps some quinoa? Bulgur? Something that seems as healthy as the rest of the recipe?

Anyone with any major ideas, please--don't be shy! This is a challenge I really hope to conquer. Not just for myself, no...but for earth-conscious vegetarians around the globe. Or at least in SW Michigan.

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