Tis the season of beets and what do we do with all the red beets – well BURGER them. Not only they enhance the taste, they look hammy than hamburger! The beauty of beet burger is that you can eat them plain with a dollop of ketchup or with your favorite dip OR serve them with a side of salad. Not only can they be served as a burger on buns, toasted whole grain bread, or pita bread; they can be cut into wedge shaped pieces and added to your Veggie wraps, salads or pizzas. (Yes, pizza’s too!)
Servings: 6-8 large burgers or 12 small burgers.
Rinse and peel the beets. Place them in a deep microwave-safe bowl with an inch or so of water at the bottom. Don’t use too much water, otherwise it will boil up and get all over your microwave. Depending on your particular Microwave unit, microwave them for 8 to 12 minutes. General guideline is 2 to 4 minutes per beet (2 minutes for small beets, 4 for medium-large). Best to start with less time and check for doneness. They are done when you can just pierce them. If the beets aren’t done when you check them, turn them over and go for another minute per beet. — try not to overcook!
You can also cook beets over the stove or bake them or roast them whole. Whatever your prefered method of cooking is, cook them until they are tender but not overdone. Plunge them into a bowl of cold water if you’d like them to cool off faster. Cut them into chunks.
Meanwhile, place half of the oats in a small bowl and cover with 1/2 cup boiling water. Let it stand until needed. Preheat the oven to 400º to 425º F.
Heat a small skillet on the stove top. Add the onion and sauté over medium heat until translucent. Add the garlic and scallions and continue to sauté until all are soft and beginning to turn golden. In a food processor, combine the sauteed beets mixture, both the soaked and dry oats, beans, cumin, and both kinds of paprika (or mesquite). Pulse on and off until the mixture is evenly and finely chopped.
Transfer the mixture to a mixing bowl. Add more oats if the mixture is too wet. Taste and add more of any or all of the three seasonings if you’d like a bolder flavor. Add salt and pepper for taste.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Now it’s time to make the burger patties. If you like smaller burgers use 1/4 cup measure and for larger size use 1/2 cup measure. Take the mix in hand and make the burger patties by flattening to less than 1/2 inch thickness.
Bake for 15 minutes or until the bottom stars to brown. Then flip the burgers and bake on the second side for 15 minutes or until lightly browned.
These burgers are so flavorful that only you can put a limit as to how you want to use them – as snacks or lunches/dinners or in salads.
We usually have the burgers with whole grain buns, mustard, ketchup, lettuce/spinach, tomato, sliced red onion.