This recipe is a gift to you from my book ‘Mouthwatering Vegan’ (published by Random House 2013), available from Amazon US or Amazon UK along with most other major online & retail booksellers.
From the point of view of taste – this has got to be one of the tastiest burgers I have ever had. I am not going to say much about it because I’m gob-smacked at the result. It’s spicy, a little sweet, the texture is amazing, having a moist and slightly chewy consistency to it – and the taste is, well, even if I say so myself, iconic ! Caramelized, succulent, satisfying, rich, moreish, irresistible, and after one mouthful, you won’t stop ! (Kids adore it too).
INGREDIENTS FOR BURGERS
2 oz (60 g) frozen spinach, thawed
1 cup (250 ml) arborio rice
3 cups (750 ml) water
1⁄2 tsp (2 ml) turmeric
9 oz (270 g) extra-firm silken tofu, thinly sliced
3 tbsp (45 ml) teriyaki sauce
3 tbsp (45 ml) soy sauce
2 tbsp (30 ml) agave or maple syrup
1 tbsp (15 ml) muscovado or dark brown sugar
11⁄2 tsp (7.5 ml) plus 2 tbsp (30 ml) olive oil, plus extra for frying
1⁄2 small onion, sliced into rings
2–3 cloves garlic, chopped
1⁄2 cup (125 ml) vegan ground meat substitute or hydrated tvp
a pinch of chili powder
2 tsp (10 ml) brown sauce or Hp sauce (optional)
1 cup (250 ml) medium-fine dried whole-grain breadcrumbs
salt to taste (optional—the soy sauce may give it enough salt)
chopped spring or green onions
sliced onion rings
1. First, ensure that the spinach is fully thawed, and then squeeze out the excess moisture through a sieve using either your hands or the back of a spoon.
2. Rinse the rice thoroughly and combine in a saucepan with the water and turmeric. Bring to a boil, cover, reduce the heat and simmer until the rice is cooked, about 30 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, cover a plate with paper towels and place the tofu slices on top, then cover with more paper towels. This will help absorb any excess water from the tofu.
4. Make the topping by combining the teriyaki sauce, soy sauce, agave or maple syrup, muscovado sugar and 11⁄2 tsp (7.5 mL) of the olive oil with a fork. Set aside.
5. Dice the tofu into small pieces and place in a bowl. Spoon a little of the topping onto the tofu so that it absorbs the flavor and color.
6. Heat 2 Tbsp (30 mL) of the olive oil in a large nonstick frying pan set over medium heat. Fry the onion for 1–2 min- utes, then add the garlic. Stir for 30 seconds, then add the vegan ground meat substitute and cook for a minute or so.
7. Add the chili powder, followed by the diced tofu. Mix for a minute or so, then add the rice and spinach. Add the brown sauce (if using), and continue to stir until the rice browns and becomes a bit crispy.
8. Take off the heat, allow to cool for a few minutes, then transfer the mixture to a large bowl. Add the breadcrumbs and salt (if using), stir with a spoon and refrigerate for 1 hour.
9. Preheat the oven to 400oF (200oC). Using clean, slightly wet hands, shape the mixture into 4 to 6 patties and place on a tray or large plate lightly dusted with flour.
10. Heat a drizzle of oil in a frying pan set over medium heat. Fry the burgers for 3–4 minutes on each side, until nicely golden, then transfer them to an ovenproof dish.
11. Spoon 1 tsp (5 mL) or so of the tofu topping on each burger, and bake in the preheated oven for 10 minutes. Turn the burgers and spoon on some more topping, then return to the oven for another 10 minutes. Before serving, spoon any remaining topping on the burgers.
12. Garnish each burger with spring onions, a lettuce leaf and onion rings, and serve on a bun, or on its own.
All recipes and content © Miriam Sorrell www.mouthwateringvegan.com 2010
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