Tag Archives: onion

Tuna Burgers

This is one of my favorite childhood meals that I continue to make when I want a quick home-cooked meal.  My mom used crushed saltines instead of the breadcrumbs, and she also added relish to the mix–which is definitely reminiscent of 1980’s food culture–but this is my own updated recipe.  

You’ll only be able to make 2 average-sized burgers from this, so just double or triple the recipe if you are cooking for more than two people.  If you use homemade breadcrumbs, as I do when I have them on hand, then add 1/2 tsp or more of salt, and your choice of Italian seasonings to taste.  Store-bought breadcrumbs already contain all that good stuff–and some bad stuff too, but they are a nice staple to have on hand in the pantry for emergencies.  

Serve on a toasted bun, or wrapped in romaine leaves with avocado and sprouts.

INGREDIENTS:
1 can tuna, drained
1 egg
1/4 C finely chopped onions
1/2 C Italian-style breadcrumbs (homemade or store-bought)
2 cloves minced garlic
2 T olive oil, for pan-frying

DIRECTIONS:
In a medium-sized mixing bowl, mix the egg into the tuna with a fork.  Add onions and garlic.  Mix again.  Add breadcrumbs and mix with hands until moist and evenly distributed.  Split the mix into two evenly-sized balls, and mold into patties.  Let sit for 3-5 minutes so the breadcrumbs become completely absorbed.

Heat the olive oil in a no-stick skillet over medium heat.  Add the burgers, and pan-fry until golden brown, approximately 3-5 minutes per side.

Serve on a toasted bun, or wrapped in romaine leaves with avocado and sprouts.

Vegetarian Chili

I’m a fan of spicy chili, so this recipe tends to be on the spicier side (according to my roommate).  If you’d like to tone it down, halve (or omit) the crushed red pepper.  Additionally, you can stir in a spoonful of sugar at a time until the spiciness is adjusted to your liking.

INGREDIENTS:

1 15 oz. can black beans (with sauce)
1 15 oz. can kidney beans (rinsed)
1 15 oz. can chick peas (rinsed)
1 C uncooked lentils
1 28 oz. can crushed tomatoes
1 6 oz. can tomato paste
1 medium yellow squash (grated or chopped)
1 medium zucchini (grated or chopped)
1 medium onion (grated or chopped)
2 T minced garlic
2 T chili powder
1 T crushed red peppers
1 T ground cumin
1 T oregano
1 tsp sea salt
3 T olive oil

DIRECTIONS:

Prepare vegetables and set aside.  I like to use the grating plate on my food processor, but if you like a chunkier texture in your chili, then you might like your vegetables chopped or slivered.  A grated texture tends to mask the vegetable flavor, if you are cooking for someone who prefers a meatier chili.

In a large stovetop pot, heat olive oil over medium heat.  Add onion, squash, and garlic.  Sautee 4-5 minutes, until vegetables are soft, but not browned.  Reduce heat to medium-low.  Add chili powder, crushed red pepper, cumin, sea salt, and oregano.  Stir into mix, and continue to heat until fragrant.  Add crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, and lentils.  Cook for 30 minutes.  If chili begins to wildly sputter, then turn the heat down a bit.

Add kidney beans, chick peas, and black beans (remember to include the liquid from the black beans can).  Stir, and cook for an additional 20 minutes.

Taste, and adjust spices to your liking.  Garnish with sour cream, chives, shredded cheddar cheese, tortilla chips, or all of the above!


Carrot Sesame Lentil Burgers

INGREDIENTS:

2C cooked lentils (any type)
3/4C whole wheat bread crumbs (I use the seasoned kind)*
2 eggs (or a ground flax/water substitute ratio of 1T:2T)
1/2 medium onion
2 carrots, stems removed
2 garlic cloves, minced
2T soy sauce
2T sesame seeds
2T olive oil, and some extra for pan-frying

DIRECTIONS:

In a food processor, chop the carrots, onion, and garlic for a few seconds.  Add lentils, eggs, olive oil, sesame seeds, and soy sauce.  Pulse for no more than 10 seconds, until the texture becomes creamy.  It will be lumpy from the lentils, but that’s okay.  Whole lentils usually make for a much nicer texture than a completely pureed mixture.

Transfer mixture to a medium-sized mixing bowl.  Incorporate bread crumbs using a large spoon or getting right into it with my preferred method of hand-smashing.  Allow the mixture to set about 5 minutes so the bread crumbs absorb the moisture from the mix.

On stovetop, preheat 2T of olive oil in a skillet on medium heat.

Form mixture into patties, and lightly place in oil.  Cover, and pan-fry for 3-4 minutes.  Flip over, cover again, and cook for an additional 3-4 minutes until patty is brown on both sides and center is no longer wet.

Serve with or without a bun.  Sauteed kale or some apple slices are a nice complement!

*NOTES:

If you don’t use seasoned breadcrumbs, add some sage, rosemary, or thyme to season a bit.