Things Fall Apart, but that’s okay.



Yesterday, I was checking out my WP reader and I came across a very tasty-looking recipe for a “burger” at the Girl Eats Greens blog.  I was so tempted by it that I immediately printed it off, and since I knew that I had everything in to make it, I decided to do just that.

If you check the recipe at Jamie’s site, you can see what she used to make the burgers, but I will tell you that I don’t believe I have ever followed a recipe to the letter in my life, so no surprise, I didn’t with this one.

I cooked up a package of organic quinoa and set it aside.  I also sliced up some sweet potatoes (since the ones in her photo were calling my name), tossed them with a little olive oil, basil, black pepper and smoked paprika and put them in the fridge.

Then I set about to make the burgers.  My original intention was to make them small and put them in a wrap, but they seemed to be quite substantial what with the quinoa and black bean combo; I felt a bun or wrap might prove unnecessary.  Besides, I had leftover super-salad (kale, romaine, apple, carrot, beet, hemp hearts, walnuts with a tahini dressing)  in the fridge to have on the side as well.

I got out my big trusty stainless bowl and dumped in a can of black beans (rinsed and drained) which I mashed with a positively ancient metal potato-masher that has been in my family since the 1960s. (I’m usually very good at parting with things when they’ve done their time; not so, my mom).

Next, I added in some chopped scallions, a bunch of chopped cilantro. Jamie’s recipe called for 2 cups of spinach.  I didn’t have fresh on hand, but I had a zip-bag of spinach that I had frozen a while back, so I had taken it out to thaw and then pressed it between two paper towels to get most of the moisture out.  I also dropped in, 1 tsp. garlic (from a jar), 1 tsp. cumin, 1 Tbsp. lime juice, 1 loaded tsp. of sriracha and some freshly ground black pepper.  I kept on mashing it all together and then added the quinoa and stirred it well.

I had a notion to add some frozen organic corn kernels too, as I love corn – I can eat anyone under the table when there is fresh corn on the go.  I will hunt you down for your own cobs if they look unfinished to me. *kidding  No, I’m not, but don’t judge me.

So anyway, I mixed up the whole mess and tried to make patties with it, but it was just not holding together.  Granted, Jamie used a food processor which I don’t own, so maybe that’s what went wrong – there was just not enough liquid squeezed out of the beans to bind it together. Also, I may have got a little over-enthusiastic with the quinoa.

In an effort to remedy this, I threw in a huge Tablespoon of tahini and it worked!

I formed the patties, lay them out a baking sheet lined with parchment paper (God’s gift to cooks and bakers, imho), covered them with foil and put them in the fridge until I was ready to bake them.

As per Jamie’s instructions, I did up my sweet-tater fries in a 425 degree oven and then left them on the stove in an old baking pan on low, to stay warm.

I baked the patties on one side for 10 minutes, but when I tried to flip them—disaster! They started to crumble and there was no piecing them back together.  Thankfully, I had only made the attempt on two burgers and the rest were intact.  I put them back in the oven and baked for another 10 minutes.

Apart from a little bit of crumbling from pan to plate, they stayed together.  I drizzled some of my tahini dressing left over from the lunchtime salad, put some fries on the plate and salad on the side.

Things fall apart sometimes, but honestly, I don’t care if it’s not magazine-cover material as long as it tastes good on my tongue and nourishes my belly and no animals were harmed to put it on my plate.

Have a look at these babies!




11 thoughts on “Things Fall Apart, but that’s okay.

  1. I’m glad that you were able to salvage them! And yes, I think the food processor was key – especially when it came to breaking down the spinach small enough. But I’m glad to have inspired you for a yummy dinner. Your fries look delicious too! 🙂

    • I forgot to mention that I couldn’t stop eating the mixture as I was making up the patties. Really delicious! I didn’t have any organic coriander, or I would have used it. I’ve made the switch with most of my spices and there’s no going back to the old stuff.

  2. I’m also guilty of not following recipes but sometimes that can be the best way as it forces you to use your imagination (although it might not end up quite as pretty…) Tahini sounds like a good addition flavourwise and nutritionwise to keep them together 🙂

  3. You know, I grew up in a house where frozen French fries were just the norm, so overbought them all my life, until recently. I just never knew how easy they are. Mind you, I never get them quite as square-edged as I’d like, but hey taste amazing. I have a homemade Cajun spice mix that I often use, but now I have to go back and make it again with all organic spices and herbs. It tastes amazing on fries. I need to get to that!

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