Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Bean Burgers

I've been searching for a good bean burger recipe ever since I went gluten free. I've tried a lot of recipes, but never found one that 1. stuck together into an actual burger shape or 2. tasted like something that didn't need drowned in ketchup or bbq sauce or 3. didn't destroy my kitchen and take too way to long to make.

Finally, at last, I have success!

I adapted this recipe from one a gluten-free, vegan recipe I found on Spark People. If you're looking for a free Web site to help you track calories and exercise, make goals, and overall support a healthy lifestyle, I recommend trying out sparkpeople.com. I haven't used the social parts of the site, but so far, I like what I've seen.

But back to the good stuff... bean burgers. So far I've made them with pinto beans and black beans. I plan on trying a white bean version soon. The first time I made them, they were good. The second time, I knew I had a hit. I was more methodical in my preparation of the second batch, so those are the ingredients and proportions I'll list here.

Now, don't think you're going to fool anyone that these are "the real thing" ...but I never thought that was the point of bean burgers... to me, bean burgers are just a delicious way to eat more veggies.

Gluten-free bean burgers
2 cups beans, canned or boiled, drained
1 egg
1/2-1/3 cup finely chopped veggies (I throw onion, 2 cloves garlic, and 2 small carrots in the food processor and chop until finely processed,)
1 cup crushed Rice Chex
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon smoked chipotle pepper

1. Crush the Rice Chex in the food processor and set aside. You'll need about 1 cup crushed.
2. Add the spices to the crushed cereal.
3. Process the veggies in the food processor (minus beans) until finely chopped.
4. Combine beans, egg, and processed veggies in a small bowl. Put 3/4 of this mixture back into the food processor and blend until the beans are smooth. Add back to the small bowl and mix.
5. Add the crushed cereal and mix until it starts to come together. It will still be pretty wet.
6. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
7. Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
8. Form 6 patties of bean mixture and place them evenly on the baking sheet. They will be wet and stick, so keep your hands damp to make it all easier to handle.
9. Bake for about 30 minutes until the burgers are firm.
10. Eat. (They're especially good with taco sauce and sour cream.)

For my batch of white bean burgers I'm planning on using rosemary, oregano, and basil for the spices and adding some sun-dried tomatoes to the onions, garlic, and carrot. I think it will make a delicious "pizza burger."

Friday, April 22, 2011

True Love.

True Love is... when your husband goes to Toledo and brings back baked goods from the best GF bakey.
True Love is... when he did this without you asking him or even knowing that he did.
True Love is... a chocolate cupcake that you devour, a coconut macaroon that you share, and a loaf of bread for crusty grilled cheese and warm soup on a cold and wet April night.

True Love is delicious!

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Chocolate Cake

Before last night, I couldn't tell you the last time I made a chocolate cake. I am not sure why, but it never seems to be the thing at the top of my list for baking. However when surfing through some food blogs the other day I found this recipe. I couldn't get this recipe out of my head, and I knew that I had a most if not all of the ingredients in my cupboard. So last night I got out my food processor and my Kitchen Aid and decided to give it a go.

Once I got started, I realized that I didn't quite have all the ingredients, so my recipe ended up looking more like this:

1/2 cup tapioca flour
1/2 cup brown rice flour
1/2 cup potato starch
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp cream of tartar
1/2 tsp gluten-free baking powder
5 tbsp cocoa powder
3 eggs
1/4 cup nonfat yogurt
1/4 cup skim milk
4 squares Baker's semi-sweet chocolate (melted)
2 tbsp maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla
2/3 cup butter (room temperature)
1 cup pitted prunes
Preheat oven to 350F. Grease an 8-inch spring form pan
Mix all the dry ingredients (flours and powders) together with a whisk and set aside.
Melt the chocolate and allow to cool slightly. Watch out that it doesn't burn in the microwave!
Mix the butter and prunes in a food processor, and transfer to a mixer.
Slowly add in the melted chocolate and maple syrup into the mixture.
Then add in each egg individually, alternating with the dry ingredients. Beat well between each addition.
Mix the yogurt and milk together, then add to the batter slowly. Mix until well combined.
Drizzle the vanilla into the mix.
This mixture will yield a fairly stiff batter.
Spoon into a well greased tin, and bake for about 30 minutes until firm to the touch. It took mine about 35 minutes.

The result is a rich, moist, not-too-sweet chocolate cake you can eat without feeling too bad about. I think this cake would be perfect with some fresh fruit and maybe a touch of whipped cream. I will definitely be making it again. If you're thinking... "Prunes? How could that be good?" Trust me. It's delicious.