Thursday, 17 November 2011

Thrifty Thursdays ~ Kidney Bean Burgers with Pitta and 3 side salads

Kitchen Play List: Stevie Ray Vaughan ~ The Essential Album

Thrifty Thursdays are becoming one of my favourite things about my blog. It's a challenge and this week I think I met it head on. 

I love a 'good' veggie burger. During my vegetarian days I did tire of them for a while. Especially the mass produced cardboard burgers and in particular the veggie burgers that flooded the market with 'meaty' texture and taste. And although I could see...just!..their place for the struggling new veggies who missed their meat consumption, for me they were a nightmare, as I have never had a taste for meat or its texture. In fact that's the reason I struggle with mushroom and aubergine if they have a meaty texture. They are just not for me. If I have a veggie burger I need it to have three things...1. Packed with veggies, nuts and beans. 2. Little or no preservatives as they make me ill. 3. It must not taste of meat or have a meat texture. Simple, no? But now I make all my own..they are never an issue. And we greatly enjoy a veggie burger in this house. 

I was almost ecstatic when I found this recipe for Kidney Bean Burgers. In fact I was astounded that I hadn''t made these before today. A burger with just 3 ingredients? Was I reading it wrong? 3? And it was all ingredients I have in my stocks so that was even better. I found this recipe in Leah Leneman's classic cook book Easy Vegan Cooking.

I usually serve up my veggie burgers in pittas, a good roll or more often than not in a lettuce wrap but today I chose the pitta. I also usually serve them stuffed with bean sprouts of some kind but I could find any locally and a trip into the city, just for bean sprouts would really go against the whole point of Thrifty Thursdays, no? lol. So I opted for the crispy lettuce and sliced tomato option. I like to serve my burgers with a few little portions of side salads. I opted for the very simple (and one of our personal favourites) Carrot & Lemon Salad, Minted Beetroot Salad and finally Joanne Stepaniak's lovely Green Bean and Tomato Salad.  

These burgers were so easy to make it seemed too good to be true but nope..they were easy to handle, easy to cook...and easier to eat. lol. I use gluten free oats in my cooking so these were gluten free but if you can't eat oats then I think Quinoa flakes would work well in this recipe. And obviously choose a gluten free pitta, roll or just have them in the lettuce cups would be lovely. Also swap the soy for tamari. I plan to try them again in the cups very soon. 

The only other thing I need to add is that some may find them a little dry. So if you need a lot of juice with your burger it would be wise to have some relish or sauce at the ready. But I really enjoyed them as they were. 

NB: Following the recipe there is a breakdown of the costings for this meal for 4. I was stunned when I worked it A  

Kidney Bean Burgers with Lettuce & Tomato in Pittas with 3 side salads
Kidney Bean Burgers Makes 4 burgers
(Recipe from Easy Vegan Cooking/Leneman)

455g/1lb/2 1/2 cups or 2 14oz tins of cooked kidney beans,  rinsed and drained
55g/2oz/ 1/2 cup rolled oats or gluten free option
2 tbsps soy sauce or tamari

Drain and mash the beans in a bowl. Add the oats and soy sauce and knead well with the hands. Form into four large burgers. 

These burgers could not be easier to make and form..and they didn't fall apart during cooking either!
In a lightly oiled skillet cook them on both sides until browned over a high heat. (Approx 4 minutes each side ~R~) Then reduce the heat to low and cook for a further 3 minutes each side to ensure they are cooked through. Serve.

Close up on the cooked burgers in the pittas..Yum.
Super Simple Carrot & Lemon Salad

3 medium to large carrots, peeled and grated
Juice from 1/2 fresh lemon

Place grated carrot into a serving dish and pour the lemon over the carrots, stir well and serve. Too easy! ~R~

Beetroot & Mint Salad

1 large or 2 med cooked beetroot/s, sliced 
Juice from 1/2 a fresh lemon
1/4 tsp brown sugar
8 fresh mint leaves, finely chopped

Place the beetroot into a bowl and toss with the lemon juice, sugar and the mint. Cover and chill before serving. Serve..

Green Bean and Tomato Salad
(Recipe from Vegan Deli/Stepaniak)

2 cups fresh green beans, trimmed and cut into 2" pieces
1 med/large tomato
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
1 tbsp rapeseed oil or oil of choice
1 tsp soy sauce or tamari

Steam the green beans until just tender. Place in a large bowl. 

Cut the tomato into 12 thin wedges, and add to the green beans.

Combine the vinegar, oil and soy in a small bowl and beat together until well combined. Pour over the vegetables and toss gently. Let marinate at room temprature for 30 to 60 minutes before serving. Store leftovers in the fridge but bring to room temprature about 30 minutes before serving. 


Thrifty Thursday Meal Costs Breakdown

Kidney Beans     0.32
Rolled Oats         0.05
4 Pittas                0.12
Tomatoes            0.54
Beetroot              0.09
Green Beans       1.00
Lettuce                0.39
Carrots                0.15
Lemon                 0.18
Fresh Mint         0.01
Rapeseed Oil      0.16
Soy Sauce           0.06
Red Wine Vin     0.05
Brown Sugar      0.01

TOTAL             £3.04             

Yes that's correct £3.04 to feed four people and that's 76p each. I'm still working on a proper calculation box for these posts so please excuse my primitive method of input for 

Enjoy those pennies.