It's Saturday. I typically like to cook more on the weekends. This weekend is no exception. I've been wanting to try the All-American Incrediburgers recipe in the American Vegan Kitchen cookbook by Tamasin Noyes for a while now. I have all of the ingredients needed in my kitchen. In fact, the recipe pretty much just takes staple items found in any vegan cook's kitchen. However, the burgers have to steam for one hour and then cool in the fridge for an hour before grilling. So, I knew it would take some time to make these. I was determined they would be my Saturday project.
The burgers were very easy to put together. The hardest part was timing myself so I kneaded them a full 4 minutes. I'll admit, my hands were tired kneading at about the 3 minute mark, but I kneaded them a full 4 minutes. I used an old Tupperware hamburger mold to make the burgers. That way, my burgers will all be uniform in size and shape (hopefully!). I created a loose foil packet around each one.
The next step was to steam the burgers for an hour. OK, I don't know why I thought this, but I thought I'd be able to steam all 6 burgers in my steamer basket for my 3 quart saucepan. WRONG! So, I went to Plan B. I bought this rice cooker with 3 steamer baskets in July 2009, 6 months before I had even thought about changing my eating lifestyle and a full year before I started using vegan recipes. It was still in the box as I had never used it. How glad was I that I had it?!?!? It has 3 steamer baskets. I know this will become one of my much used appliances. I have been using a rice cooker with a single steamer insert to make rice and steam veggies at the same time, but now that I'm making my own burgers, etc. I will need more steamer baskets and this will definitely fit the bill.
An hour later, the burgers have finished steaming. Out of the steamer they came and I put them on a plate. The next step is to refrigerate the burgers for an hour (at least) to let them cool. THEN, they will be ready for the grill. It's rainy here today. I can't decide whether to BBQ them on the Weber or use the indoor grill. I guess when the time is closer, I'll make that call.
In the meantime, I need to go to the grocery store and pick up some Hawaiian Bread sandwich rolls, which are basically hamburger buns. Yes, I know they are not the most nutrient dense buns that could be used, but my sons absolutely love them. I'll probably pick up a package of multi-grain buns for myself. After I return from the store, I'll start out side dish. I will be making Crash Hot Potatoes instead of the usual. My sons usually ask for Tator Tots, French fries, or mac 'n cheese. However, I want something a bit more nutritious and flavorful.
So, I decided to cook the burgers out on the Weber. It's still gray and cloudy, but I would like the full flavor experience. After starting the charcoal, I smashed the potatoes.
I went out and got some fresh chives off of my deck. Years ago, probably more than a decade ago, I bought a chive plant. That thing is indestructible. I brushed the potatoes with some olive oil and sprinkled them with freshly cut chives. The potatoes were ready to pop into the oven for 20 to 25 minutes.
I got the burgers out and brushed one side with olive oil and popped them on the grill for 5 minutes before brushing the other side with olive oil and turning them over. After 10 minutes on the grill, they were looking quite tasty.
Just to give myself the most authentic burger experience I could, I put a slice of vegan cheese on one of the burgers and put it back on the grill for about another minute.
About that time, the potatoes were ready to take out of the oven. They looked great, too!
My Saturday evening dinner, which is a casual affair, actually took quite a bit of planning and preparation as I fixed two multi-stage dishes. BUT it was WELL worth the effort and time. This is a repeat meal for sure. AND, I have burgers left for another meal this week and to stick in the freezer for a night that I don't feel like cooking. What could be better than a BBQ burger? YUM!
I highly recommend the American Vegan Kitchen cookbook. It has some fabulous recipes in it, all family friendly. My son wants me to fix the NY Cheesecake out of the cookbook and there is a coffee cake recipe that I simply must try. Plus, I will be making the Fork-and-Knife Reuben. So many recipes, endless time...what a nice hobby for my fall and winter.