“Nothing is ever really lost to us as long as we remember it.”
― L.M. Montgomery, The Story Girl
In recent years, I have revived my love for meat, and its been a struggle really to return to my once meatless days. But nothing good comes easy, and I am happy to announce that I have been vegetarian for a good 3 weeks now.
For those who know me personally, deep down this girl’s a burgers and beers kinda girl. But I just had to make my life difficult by taking the beef out of the picture now do I?
Well actually, no.
While I am well aware that there are people who are convinced that such messaging is a propaganda for vegetarianism/veganism (not sure why such -isms exist in the first place but anyhow), if environmental reasons such as reducing your carbon footprint (and thus greenhouse gas emissions which promote global warming), minimising water usage, and reducing fossil fuel dependence aren’t in themselves good enough reasons to go vegetarian at least ONCE per week. Please let those of us who wish to do so, do so in peace.
Did you know?
To produce 1 pound of meat, it requires 12 times more land, 13 times more fossil fuel and 15 times more water than producing 1 pound of soy protein?*
Going meatless doesn’t mean salads all day everyday by the way. As with every change – like deciding to get a gym membership or deciding to take part in a marathon – the initial phase is difficult. Quite frankly I wouldn’t be surprised if any meat eater thinks vegetarians don’t eat for that matter. Or worse yet, if you do go meatless you might end up feeling starved and deprived simply because you weren’t eating enough of the RIGHT kinds of food.
But thats ok – all of us learn by making mistakes. And I promise you, it is only the initial phase that is tough, just like learning to ride a bicycle. But once you understand where your balance is, its cruising from there on out.
Back to the matter of burgers and beers, I was determined to have this fix without needing the otherwise star of the combination i.e. beef.
I did my research and wanted a recipe that would be easy for any Singaporean to do (because beets aren’t always available, quinoa and flax breathe “health food” in their mere mention, and I certainly did not want to involve eggs)
Inspired by the Food Lab’s recipe, the ingredients I ended up settling for are cheap and easily available from any supermarket.
Here’s what you’ll need (recipe yields 5 patties)
1 Can – Red Kidney Beans
1 Can – Black beans
1 Green Bell Pepper
1 white onion – you will only use about 10 grams
100 grams baked cashews
For seasoning the patties:
1 tsp chili flakes
1 tsp dried basil
1/2 tbsp Shoyu
1/2 tbsp Mirin
mushrooms, wasabi sprouts, mustard, burger bun.
Here’s the plan:
Rinse beans well, and fry them up on an un-oiled non stick pan to remove moisture.
Dice up the bell pepper.
Saute onions with the chilli flakes and dried basil. Once onions soften, add in the bell peppers and cook well.
Toast the cashews to bring out the aroma. Once cooled blitz them. This will add texture and fat to the patties, which will also help to hold them up a little.
To the beans – mash them up like you were to make mash potatoes. Once mashed, add the cooked bell peppers and cashews. Add the shoyu and mirin here.
Start moulding the patties. I found using glad wrap helpful in getting the patties nice and tightly packed.
Heat up a tsp of cooking oil to a non stick pan.
Cook on the first side for about 2 minutes (I use an induction stove by the way) or until golden, before flipping to cook on he other side.
If I may, these burgers were delightful. I was really surprised at how it held up without needing any of the conventional binding agents. Apart from being highly satisfying, these were both light and filling. If you’re still not convinced how good these are, well there’s only 1 way to find out. Try it!
*information from : http://www.chooseveg.com/environment