Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Making Rice-Nut Burgers

A good pal over at posted a recipe that I've wanted to try for a while now. And the impetus came when Ben and I finished some PC bison burgers and decided that they were on the scary side of the food chain because they were foamy tasting. You know, like McDonald's chicken nuggets. So, yesterday I jumped in and made the rice-nut burgers and we had some last night for dinner. The verdict from those of us who ate them (Pippa's still not having nuts, now the doc says wait until 18 months to introduce nuts) was a resounding YUM. Clara scarfed down her half and Ben and I ate ours with relish. Not literally, but figuratively. Anyway, I thought I'd document the process in case anyone is wanting to give them a go. It's not that much work and its nice to have 9 or so meals in the freezer.
Here's the original recipe and I'll include the minor notes/changes of mine.
You need a big pot to cook 4 cups of rice and 4 cups of onion with 7.5 cups of water.

Grinding up the nuts and seeds isn't too bad but make sure everything is toasted or roasted before you do, otherwise you'll have nut butter.
Yes, you need that much cheese (~800g) and substituting old cheddar didn't work for me because it was too moist and wouldn't grind/chop up.
I used tamari sauce and this bowl. It is the biggest one I had but was still only good for half the mixture. I ended up putting half of everything in this bowl, mixing it with a spoon and making it into burgers before starting on the second half (I used the pot the rice cooked in for the second half). Next time I might try using my huge stock pot to cook the rice in and then using it to mix everything up too.
Yummy cheese (makes a big difference in your burger)
I wasn't using a measure to make the first couple of batches (I made 3 burgers in one package) but switched to a generous 1/2 cup of mixture after my first ones were HUGE. I also used this nerdy burger maker/shaper that I got from family friends of Jane's way back when we were having a huge garage sale and they wanted to unload stuff. That and the work experience I gained one summer that I spent making burgers at a golf course ensured this part went quickly. Total burgers made: 27 (9 packages of 3).
And then, pan-fried with the merest amount of spray oil. Ben had his on a bun, I didn't. Clara had hers with ketchup. I didn't. They were great.

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