Monday, June 07, 2010

the menu board: may 31 through june 4

"All made with love, and without dairy!" (Week one of the Apostles' Fast.)
Monday: Homemade Black Bean Burgers (see recipe below) with Baked Home Fries
Tuesday: Slow Cooker Quinoa and Corn Chowder
Wednesday: Dinner at Church
Friday: Mushroom and Sun-Dried Tomato Risotto (I omitted the beans, so yes, this was a protein free meal. Sorry guys.)

Monday: The first day of the fast, and Memorial Day. Luckily for us, we had our fill of burgers and potato salad at the cookout the night before. But, it's tradition to grill, so we enjoyed the leftover bean burgers (for the vegetarian party attendees) and home fries baked using Huey's seasoning.

I started making my own veggie burgers a few months ago. I looked around the internet for recipes. And I watched a few videos. Here's what I came up with: (No specific proportions, just use your knowledge of a regular beef burger's consistency to guide you...)

Black Bean Burgers-
Ingredients for 4 generous burgers:

2 Cans Black Beans (Drained and Rinsed)
1 Medium-Large Onion Diced
Rolled Oats
Salt-Pepper-Cumin-Chipotle Chili Powder to taste. (This all depends on how you like your burger!)

Place all the ingredients in a bowl. I like to use my immersion blender to puree' most, NOT ALL of the ingredients. (You don't want baby-food, leave about half of the beans whole.) You can also do this in a food processor, but mine was on the fritz when I created the recipe, and I really like the control I have with the stick blender. (I've also done this by hand, finely mincing the onion and mashing the beans with a potato masher.)

Mix in some more oats if the mixture seems too thin. You're looking for the same consistency as a traditional meat burger, so that they'll keep their shape. Shape into large, generous patties. I like to let them rest in the fridge for a few hours, this makes them come together and hold up even better.

To Cook: Option 1: Place on a greased baking sheet at 375 degrees for 10 minutes, flip and cook for 10 more minutes.

Option 2: Grill. We grilled them, and they worked out perfectly!

They're really really filling... yet Brandon usually finds a way to eat 2-3 in one sitting!!!

BONUS!: I woke up Monday morning with a serious waffle craving. I looked through all of my vegan cookbooks and found that I only had the ingredients for one recipe, pumpkin waffles. (Not the most traditional Memorial Day brunch choice.) I called my dear friend Ashley and told her to get out of bed and come eat waffles with me! (Brandon had to work at his Starbuck's job on Monday morning, but had the day off at the library.)

It made about a dozen waffles. So, I froze the remainder. They can easily be reheated in the toaster for a quick and crispy waffle.

Tuesday: I was so ready to experiment with vegan slow cooker recipes. This is my first meatless slow cooker experiment. I loosely used the recipe above. I just used what we had: quinoa, potatoes, onion, garlic, and corn. It looked disgusting. Like really really bad. It was a really yucky grey color. Then the corn just looked even worse. It was a horrible color combination. We all eat with our eyes first... And I was turned off! But, it tasted really nice. It just needed more vegetables (like the above recipe recommends) and it might have been better. I was just too lazy, and tried to save money by using the things I already had.

Wednesday: Church dinner=Red Beans and Rice.

It was also our one month anniversary! Brandon just happened to have the day off. So, I woke up early and made the waffles again! Yummm! (Correction, Brandon manned the waffle iron while I got ready for work.)

Thursday: A sweet friend from church gave me a vegan cookbook as a wedding gift. It was such a great and thougthful gift for an Orthodox person! This recipe for golden chickpea and artichoke salad is perfect for us. Especially since Brandon had to work late. It doesn't need to be served hot. It can be served at any temperature. Covered in a lemony parsley dressing. I also made this again for a picnic at the Levitt Shell concert on Saturday night, and it was a hit again.

Friday: I made this risotto a while back. And it was definitely time to bring it back! It's not a simple dish, no risotto is. But, who doesn't love the super creamy comforting deliciousness of starchy rice with delicious ingredients like meaty mushrooms and tangy sweet sun dried tomatoes. I used some white wine in place of one cup of stock this time to change it up a bit (plus I had an open bottle in the fridge). Brandon said this was my best risotto ever.

PS- Call me a hypocrite... But, Brandon had book club on Sunday night and we BOUGHT the black bean burgers. I really did plan to make them, but a super busy Saturday dictated otherwise. Morningstar Farms makes a very nice black bean burger, for the record.


Cindy said...

hey, as far as filler for the black bean burger, have you ever used quinoa?
i have seen recipes for veggie burgers with quinoa as an ingredient.
the mushroom sun dried tomato risotto sounds really good. i just kind tired of tomato flavored or based stuff sometimes. i am trying to find a good pesto sauce minus the olive oil and the cheese.

caitlyn said...

i agree about the tomato stuff! i'm not a huge tomato based sauce fan. it seems like the fast gets really heavy on tomato sauces. (cause they're easy!) but, the risotto is mostly creamy and rich. and the tomatoes were just a sweet addition, they definitely didn't dominate.

i just bought some nutritional yeast today... that would make a nice cheese replacement in a pesto...

i like the quinoa idea! were they made using quinoa flakes of the regular whole quinoa? that would be a great way to up the nutritional value!

Cindy said...

here was one recipe i found that looked pretty good.
i am guessing maybe whole cooked quinoa.
let me know how the nutritional yeast is. it sounds so unappetizing.
did you get the nutritional yeast online or from whole foods?

caitlyn said...

it does sound gross, but it makes a nice cheesy flavor...

i got it at whole foods in the bulk bins. it's pretty inexpensive. it's good mixed with smushed tofu for a ricotta substitute. and i'm planning on using it to make country fried seitan this week.

Corinne said...

I have a great slow cooker vegan cookbook. I got it after a recommendation from my daughter in law last weekend. I've made 2 recipes this week from it so far...