Monday, September 3, 2012

Happy Labor Day!; or, Black Bean Quinoa Burgers

I've been in Minnesota for over two years. I love it here, I do, but there are some cultural things that still escape me.

Hot dishes. Vikings football. Prince (but then again, he's an enigma to everyone, right?)

The one that is most boggling to me? Summer cabins. And, without fail, in the summers, half my friends head north to their family cabins for a weekend of boating and... well, I don't know what people actually do in cabins, honestly. But on holiday weekends, almost everyone disappears.

So here I am. Labor day. Time to grill out-- in a deserted city.

And guess what? I'm excited for this Party of One.

I'm perking myself up with my favorite vegetarian patties. I first tasted these black bean quinoa patties at Birchwood Cafe in Minneapolis.

These I do get. These are life-changing.

Panko, a black bean puree, and quinoa come together.

Grilled, served on a whole wheat bun, topped with fresh lettuce, tomato, onion, avocado, and a smear of mustard. Perfection.

Happy labor day!

Black Bean Quinoa Burger

Based on my favorite meal at Birchwood Cafe 

1 cup uncooked quinoa
1 can rinsed and drained black beans
1/2 cup grated onion, patted dry
3 tbsp olive oil
2 garli cloves
1 sliced, seeded jalapeno
3/4 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1/2 cup panko crumbs

Cook the quinoa in 1 1/3 cups water for 15-20 minutes, until water is gone and quinoa can be fluffed. Set aside

Place all ingredients except the quinoa and panko in a food processor. Pulse until combined into a paste-like mixture.

Pour quinoa and panko into a bowl. Transfer bean mixture to bowl and stir to combine. Form into 8 patties. Refrigerate for 1 hour, to solidify patties and combine flavors. Patties can be frozen for later use, or baked at 400F for 10 minutes, or cooked in a skillet with olive oil until browned. Serve with all the fixings on a whole wheat bun (including avocado), and a side of oven sweet potato fries.

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