Bean burger recipe

May 23, 2009

First things, here’s the bean burger recipe:

  • 1 can (540mL) mixed beans (I used a 4 bean blend)
  • 3/4 c breadcrumbs
  • 1 egg
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 small onion, chopped (do more or less depending on how onion-y you like things)
  • salt & pepper
  • handful of spinach (optional)
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  1. Heat the oil in a pan and add the onion and garlic. Let cook for about 5 minutes or until onion is fairly tender. If you’re using spinach, add it now and cook for about 1 more minute.
  2. Let the onion mixture cool for a few minutes. Then put the beans, onion mixture and salt and pepper into a food processor and whirl up until things are pretty well chopped up. It doesn’t need to be entirely smooth.
  3. Put the bean/onion mix into a bowl and add the breadcrumbs and egg. Mix up until it comes together.
  4. Form 4 patties. To cook, I used a Foreman grill, but you can cook them in a pan or probably on the BBQ (although they are a little fragile until cooked well). Cook for about 6 minutes per side or until the burger is fairly firm and golden brown.

They’re pretty simple and hopefully they freeze well since I have two cooked patties in the freezer right now!


Homemade sweet potato fries

April 25, 2009

So I loved the sweet potato fries at Boston Pizza so much that I had to try making my own last night!

I browsed a few recipes online to get an idea of spices and came up with this, based on what was already in my spice cupboard:

  • oregano
  • salt
  • ground coriander

Cumin was also another popular seasoning, as well as paprkia, so cominbations of any of these would probably be delicious!

First, I preheated the oven to 425F. I sliced the potato in half, then cut it in long strips, which were halved again to make pretty thick-cut fries – definitely like what you’d get at a chip truck. I mixed up the spices with a couple tablespoons of olive oil (light tasting extra virgin but other types would probably be just as good) and rolled each fry in the oily mixture before putting it on a non-stick baking sheet (some recipes suggested parchment if your baking sheet isn’t super non-stick). Toss the fries in the oven for about 30 minutes, turning every 10 minutes and rotating the pan in the oven – do this or they’ll be black on one side! Even turning them, I still had some that ended up a little toasty!

I served them up with some homemade dip – light mayo with ground coriander stirred in – but they were still tasty plain.

Et voila:

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I decided to have them as the main feature of my meal with some broccoli and cauliflower (with some grated sharp cheddar) on the side – you can just barely see them hanging out in the corners of the picture.

Sweet potato fries are my new addiction. So tasty!

In super awesome great news: I finished the first draft of my thesis! AHHH! Huge relief. My supervisor is taking off to Spain tomorrow (ugh… if only) so I had to have it in today if I wanted edits before May 13 when she gets back – um, yes please considering my mark is due by May 22. I can’t belive I’m so close to having it done!

Today is supposed to be a hot one! Not sure what to do on the exercise front – it’s already hot hot hot in my bedroom where the elliptical is. I do have a window air conditioner but it seems so wrong to need to use it in April! We’ll see – I’ll try with just a fan blowing and throw the A/C on if it gets too hot. I thought about a run but it’s already 19C at 9:30am! Holy moly! I know that’s not blazing hot, but it is when we’ve been used to 10-12C for the past while. That’s one reason I’m looking forward to getting the treadmill from my parents – I hate being all warm and sweaty and gross while working out, which is why I probably won’t run outside too often in summer.

Hope everyone has a great Saturday!


Quinoa experiment

April 24, 2009

Well, I successfully made quinoa last night! Unfortunately I don’t have a picture – apparently the rechargeable batteries in my camera are dead!

Here’s what I used:

  • 1/3 c quinoa (this was a guess as most recipes were for side dishes)
  • 2ish c of chopped veggies (I used broccoli and carrots)
  • 2 c veggie stock

I brought the veggie stock to a boil while I rinsed the quinoa – this removes the bitter outter coating. Some varieties come pre-washed but I didn’t want to take my chances! I added the quinoa to the veggie stock and cooked it over medium-high heat for 7 minutes. Then I added the chopped veggies and let the mixture boil for another 5-6 minutes. I drained the small amount of leftover liquid very carefully. After throwing a tablespoon of stir fry sauce (Asian 5 Spice flavour) on top, I was ready to eat.

Overall impressions: It’s definitely a different texture but I enjoyed it! The veggie stock made the whole dish quite flavourful and the stir fry sauce added a slight kick. Considering how easy it was to make, I think it’ll be a great dish for nights when I don’t have much time.

Check out the nutritional info per 1/2 cup:

  • 317 calories
  • 5 g fat
  • 6 g fibre
  • 12 g protein
  • It also gives you 42% of your RDA for magnesium and 21% of your iron!

Looks pretty good to me!

As a final FYI, Bulk Barn sells organic quinoa. I found it in the cereals aisle, right beside granolas. If you’re new to quinoa it’s a perfect way to buy just a little bit to sample!


Soup Adventure!

March 6, 2009

Since I have no Friday classes and for once didn’t have to be on campus for any meetings, I decided to try out the sweet potato soup recipe I was given!

So, here we go!

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Ingredients, assemble! I adapted the recipe somewhat from the original since there were some ingredients I didn’t have (such as celery, since I don’t enjoy it raw), so here’s what I used:

2 medium/large sweet potatoes
1/2 onion (Spanish I believe, but the type doesn’t really matter)
Handful baby carrots
1/3 c brown rice
1/2 tbsp olive oil
4-5 cups chicken broth (use less for thicker soup, more for thinner; you can also use vegetable broth)
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander seeds
1/2 tsp ground ginger
Pepper to taste

Step 1: Slice up the veggies. Doesn’t matter how big/small you slice them because it’s all going into a food processor later, but I do recommend making sure the sweet potato slices aren’t too big or they’ll take a while to cook.

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Step 2: Put the olive oil, onion and brown rice into the pot like so and let the onions brown slightly over medium-high heat for a couple minutes.

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Step 3: In go the potatoes, carrots and chicken broth. Bring this to a boil, and then turn back the heat to let it simmer. Add in your spices now. You’ll want to let it simmer for about 40-45 minutes or until the veggies are soft and the rice is cooked.

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Here it is all cooked down. Mmm!

Now you’ll want to blend it up in a food processor. Just transfer over small amounts at a time. When you’re done, you’ll have something like this:

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I sampled some and it’s quite nice. I love the flavour of the spices in it. I’m planning on having some soup with my dinner tonight!