Holy Grail Beet Burger

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAEuan is the very definition of the enthusiastic amateur experimenter in the kitchen. He sees cookbook directions as more a sort of rough direction than something to follow to the letter. He’s also not interested in cooking any meal that takes more than fifteen minutes to make. Life’s too short for that kind of messing about as far as he’s concerned. Life is for living, not for slaving away for hours in a kitchen. He does like to eat as healthily as he can, but doesn’t see why his taste buds should suffer as a result.

The staple of the summer barbecue; gorgeously tasty, but oh so bad for you. Traditional burgers are a high fat, high salt, monstrosity filled with refined carbs. Let’s face it, your everyday run of the mill burger has got a really bad reputation.

But there’s something about the smell of a burger as it cooks that just makes you want to have one disintegrate against your tastebuds. There’s the thrill of building it up with onions, cheese, lettuce, ketchup and pickles, and then getting to cram it into your mouth all at once. Veggie burger alternatives just doesn’t cut the mustard, not if you’re after the taste explosion you expect from a traditional meat based one. If only you could make a burger that was not only good for you, but could knock your taste socks off as well.

Well you can. You just have to know how to do it

This recipe is one I’ve spent a good few years perfecting. It’s got all the flavour and the punch you’d expect from a good old home cooked meat pattie, but’s packed with loads of good stuff your heart and waist will thank you for. Friends and family won’t be able to tell the difference, and best of all anyone can make it.   Kids love them, love making them, and it’s a great way to get good nutritious stuff into them as well.

The whole idea of the Holy Grail Beet Burger is that simple food is good for you

Here’s what’s in it, and what makes it so special.

Beetroot

As a burger ingredient, it really works. It’s low in fat, really low. 100g of raw beetroot contains exactly 0g of fat and are full of vitamins.   It’s also a good source of folic acid, magnesium and potassium. The beetroot is also what gives this burger it’s magnificent strong colour.

If nothing else, it just looks good.

Walnuts, the king of the nut family

They’re high in omega 3’s, vitamin E and help speed up your metabolism. They’re full of antioxidants as well. Top tip: 90% of the antioxidants are in the skin, so don’t shell them.

Sesame seeds

They’re not just here to make the burger look good. They’re loaded with minerals like copper, magnesium, Iron and calcium.

Apples

It was at the suggestion of my wife I first added an apple to this recipe. I was sceptical to say the least, but it really added something I didn’t know was missing. It added a sweetness that wasn’t there before, but it also adds even more vitamin C. It will also help regulate your blood sugar after eating, thus alleviating the slump some people get after eating heavily.

Onions and Garlic

You can’t call any burger a burger if it doesn’t have onions inside it. They are surprisingly full of vitamin C, and they’ve got ridiculously high levels of antioxidants. They also add flavour, killing the need to add salt. Also, like beetroot, 0% fat. Garlic cloves, small but highly nutritious, and gram for gram, more vitamin C than most other food. Onions and garlic also both help to lower the bad cholesterol in your body. Wary of garlic generally? Don’t be, you won’t even taste it.

Cumin

Cumin can be overpowering, so its important not to overdo it. Cumin aids digestion, and helps absorb all the good stuff listed above.

So that’s the good stuff. Now back to basics

Mince

Is 100 g of mince spread across ten burgers enough? Will I even be able to taste it? Well, yes, and yes. That’s just 10 g a burger in meat, Because of the way you mix all the ingredients together, that ‘real’ burger taste comes through when you bite into the finished product. This is the very definition of cutting down without cutting out.

Breadcrumbs

You need them to bind the mixture together and make it stick when you form your burgers. The burgers will fall apart during cooking if you don’t.

Egg

Eggs are a mountain range of nutrition, packed with protein and over 15 essential vitamins and minerals. They’re also really versatile, and it’s that versatility we need them for in this burger. This is what gets all the other ingredients to stick together and allow you to form really condensed thick burgers that you need if you’re going to eat this recipe.

Gourmet healthy option burger in ten minutes

This is a simple, delicious dish that everyone can enjoy and feel good about it too when they eat it. What you choose to add at the end when serving is up to you. Personally, I prefer some raw onions, pickles, fresh jalapenos, cheese, mustard and ketchup nestled between bun and burger. I said the burger was good for you. I didn’t say anything about how you choose to eat it.

INGREDIENTS

Makes up to 10 decent size burgers.

  • 2 medium raw/cooked beetroots (Your choice)
  • 1 large red onion
  • 1 whole garlic clove
  • 1 apple
  • 1 egg
  • 100g breadcrumbs
  • 100g lean mince
  • 100g finely crushed walnuts (as fine as you can manage)
  • 50g sesame seeds
  • 2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • Grease proof paper
  • Oven tray
  • large bowl
  • *Ice cold beer/ beverage of choice

*Please note, the ice cold beer is a purely optional extra for the chef.

TO BUILD YOUR BURGER:

  • Wholemeal burger buns
  • Sliced gherkin (optional)
  • Sliced onion (optional)
  • 2 lettuce leaves (optional)
  • Sliced cheddar cheese (optional)
  • Mustard (optional)
  • Tomato Sauce / Ketchup (optional)

METHOD:

  1. Preheat oven to 200C
  2. Peel and grate the beetroot, apple, onion, and garlic into a large bowl
  3. Add bread crumbs, cumin, walnuts, mustard, and mince to the mix
  4. Crack the egg into the bowl
  5. Mix together well with hands
  6. Take small fists of the burger mixture into your hand, roll into palm sized balls and then flatten into patties about an inch and a half thick; and then do the same for the rest of the burgers
  7. Place the burgers on greaseproof paper on the oven tray
  8. Bake burgers in the oven for 25 minutes at 200C, or until done. (will depend on thickness of burgers)
  9. Just before the burgers are ready, toast or warm your buns under the grill
  10. Add cheese to the burgers in the oven if desired
  11. Place your burger on the bun and garnish with sliced gherkins, onions, mustard and ketchup
  12. Enjoy your delicious homemade healthy burger packed with both goodness and taste.
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