20 Sep

Recently I read Jonathan Safran Foer’s shocking polemic Eating Animals, which ranks up there as one of the most traumatic books that I’ve ever read. It details battery-farming practices, tells stories of the good and the bad in abbatoirs (as well as Foer’s own relationship with food) and muses on the philosophy of eating meat.

It’s very easy to get to the end of the book and decide that you don’t want to eat meat ever again. Not an unreasonable argument, as Foer, a skilled writer, makes a fine case – both factual and emotional.

However, it’s markedly more difficult to simply decide to cook vegetarian food, especially if you are (a.) in the habit of eating meat, (b.) like the taste of meat and (c.) don’t have a clue how to make vegetables interesting.

So I’m currently trying to do two things, which are to eat better meat less frequently and also to learn to cook interesting vegetarian food. Listen, I’m not a hippy, but I understand why you might look at me like I am now. If you do, though, I’ll likely recommend the above book to you, and I don’t know I want to do that, as meat is tasty, and you’ll probably miss it.

This was an attempt at cooking veggie burgers that didn’t really work, as the insides were still kind of mushy. The taste was good, but I feel like it could have used some more substance. Any tips on where I went wrong?

First up, fry onions in oil on a low heat with garlic, a little ginger, black pepper, wild thyme, a little bit of curry powder and some cumin seed and maybe some smoked paprika if you fancy it. Cook them until they go translucent and then set them aside to cool – while you’re doing this, heat up your chickpeas. Chuck the lot in a blender, add kidney beans to the paste and shape into patties, add a little mayonnaise to bind them and then leave for an hour before frying in oil.

As I say – great taste, but mushy texture. Any tips on how I could improve this?


Posted by on 20/09/2011 in Food


3 responses to “>> VEGI BURGERS

  1. thepygmygiant

    21/09/2011 at 9:47 am

    Have a chat with Simon, he’s a good vegetarian chef… x

    • Simon T

      23/09/2011 at 3:25 pm

      Aw, thanks! I’ve never made burgers, though, so my only thought is maybe put them in the oven for a bit before you fry them? That would harden them up a bit, maybe?

  2. Stephen Gower

    23/09/2011 at 10:26 pm

    Not sure about the texture – I made the other night as a store cupboard meal and they had a good texture, so perhaps try the breadcrumbs and egg.

    Also, check out Hugh FW’s new book – the why:
    Some sample recipes:
    Some more sample recipes on the Amazon preview:

    I’m trying to pretend I didn’t notice an Amazon package waiting in the hall for Mrs G just a couple of days after I mentioned it to her, but I don’t know if I can last the 5 weeks to my birthday.


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