I was eating out quite a bit lately, two times Japanese and somehow the spices and aromas made me crave for something more substantial and down to earth and lets say JUNK FOOD was on my mind and I searched all my new cook books and got really inspired for a big challenge.
Have you ever been out there alone and tried to accomplish something that almost everyone advices as the hardest in its league? When it comes to food photography Ice-cream, Lasagna and Burgers are the trickiest and yet I had to try it and YESSSSS ! it is .... not a ride in the park.
Why it is a challenge? Because it must look right ! The patty must be shiny the salad crisp and fresh the sauce dripping .... I have only two hands and here comes the impossible. It is all about timing:
Once the patty is done it must cool, because the salad hates to be hot, the sauce must be dripping the cheese melting the tower may not topple ... you can imagine I guess!
Here is my STREET FOOD I would crave and I wish more recipes would be out there. I tried to make a Burger, that looks like one and yet is 100% Organic, vegan, fresh and yummy. I never eat at fast food restaurants for the simple reason that I don't like the idea of not cooking nor can I imagine that one can actually eat well when the cost is so low. I am still happy that they exist, not everyone is as fortunate as I am and can afford to grab the organic versus the sale item. But once in my life I did and I remember the craving for the fast food so well when I was pregnant with Sophie and my poor husband was forced to get me something I thought I could not survive without. The funny thing is that this craving never came back and when I was pregnant with our son, it was oranges and sour tastes. Totally normal I thought eating 10 oranges a day ...
I admitted already to my broccoli phase and my red beet phase, ... which seems to be prolonged I suppose. Each time we eat out and they offer a veggie Burger, I need to try it and most of the time the patty is so soggy and the taste is off, the vegetable is of a creamy consistence and not my thing. Again this one has passed the test and was devoured by my husband in a minute even though it was already cold. Even the sauce passed my son's critical eye and tongue who still thinks that no meat is not a meal.
The patty and the cocktail sauce I made are entirely vegan and the bun has an egg in it but hopefully one day I will be able to bake one without. The bun is actually a recipe from a cookbook but you can easily find one online or go and buy them in the store. I suppose you don't want to spend a day in the kitchen making yourself a simple BURGER ? If you are interested, I can give you a simple one like the one I used.
400 grams red beets, peeled and shredded
1 tbsp garlic
100 gr oats, the large type
1 tbsp grated ginger
1/2 avocado, mashed
1 tbsp tamari sauce
salt, I used smoked salt
3 stems basil, cut in small
Cashew Cocktail sauce
2 cups soaked cashews
2 tbsp olive oil
peel and juice of one organic lemon
1 tbsp mustard
2 tbsp white wine vinegar
1 ½ agave syrup
6 tbsp water
½ -1 tsp salt
5 tbsp ketchup
1 tbsp Worcester shire sauce
Additional for assembling
fresh green salad
yellow bell peers cut in rings
slices of vegan cheese
onions or white cabbage cut in slices
burger buns, self made or bought
The patty is a colorful red something, no name has been invented but please use gloves and an apron, mix it all together and let it rest while you make the sauce and prepare the other steps.
The sauce is made in a powerful blender, I use a blendtec bought at the Cuisinarum on speed 4.
For the sauce:
The cashews can be soaked over night in cold water or for an hour in hot water, that will do the same trick, rinse them and put them in the blender. Add all the other ingredients except the salt and vinegar, the amount depends on weather you like it tasty or rather blend. Taste to your liking. The amount of water the sauce demands can vary a bit so add if you think it is not saucy enough. A bit of a feel for it and you cannot go wrong. Vegan cooking allows creativity and forgives individual approaches. When you are done with the basic sauce you can use as well for a salad dressing, take 4 heaped tbsp of the cashew cream - save the rest for later - and add the ketchup and the Worcester shire sauce, mix well and set aside.
In a pan heat some olive oil on medium heat, form patties with two spoons or with your hands from the red beet mix. Cook on both sides until slightly brown. Here raw will still be safe and well done is not ruined. That is what meat lovers say when it comes to define the grade of meat cooking.
Rare – Medium – Ruined
Everything is great !
Cut the burgers in half assemble the burger with what ever you like best, even a slice of vegan cheese.
Mine is a bun - salad - sauce - red beet patty - cabbage - cheese - salad - sauce - bun – Yumm !!!