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Bursting with harvest flavours

The problem with many veggie burgers is that they try too hard to be hamburgers.

The problem with many veggie burgers is that they try too hard to be hamburgers.

Sorry, but they’re not fooling anyone, least of all diehard carnivores.

So why not embrace the idea of a veggie burger and make one that tastes and looks like what it is — a burger made from veggies and grains?

That was the motivation in creating this harvest burger, a patty bursting with flavour, not to mention onions, red pepper, corn, pumpkin, rice and oats. It won’t fool you into thinking it’s meat, and it’s not supposed to.

The burger goes great with a slab of cheddar and a slather of mayonnaise, but feel free to top as you see fit.

Harvest veggie burgers




Ingredients:




  • 45 ml (3 tbsp) olive oil


  • 1 onion, diced


  • 5 ml (1 tsp) ground cumin


  • 1 red bell pepper, core and diced


  • 125 ml (1/2 cup) corn kernels, fresh or frozen


  • 250 ml (1 cup) cooked brown rice


  • 250 ml (1 cup) quick oats, lightly toasted


  • 1 can (398 ml/14 oz) pumpkin or squash puree


  • 30 ml (2 tbsp) chopped fresh cilantro or parsley


  • 15 ml (1 tbsp) balsamic vinegar


  • Pinch cayenne pepper


  • 5 ml (1 tsp) salt


  • 2 ml (1/2 tsp)black pepper


  • 6 burger buns




Preparation:

1. In a skillet over medium-high, heat 15 ml (1 tbsp) of the oil. Add onion and cumin; sauté until onion softens and begins to brown, about 5 minutes. Add red pepper and corn kernels and sauté until just tender, 3 to 4 minutes.

2. Transfer mix to bowl and let cool 5 minutes. Add rice, oats, pumpkin, cilantro, balsamic vinegar, cayenne, salt and pepper. Stir to combine. Form mix into 6 patties.

3. Heat remaining olive oil in skillet over medium-high. Add patties to skillet, in batches if needed, and brown for 3 minutes per side. Serve on buns with preferred condiments.

Ruby Red Beet Soup




Beets offer up a jewel-like red colour to this soup and they are full of nutritional goodness and flavour.

When making the Ruby Red Beet Soup, look for larger beets to save time peeling.

Ingredients:



  • 750 g (1 1/2 lb) beets, peeled


  • 1 onion


  • 1 large baking potato, peeled


  • 1.5 l (6 cups) sodium-reduced chicken broth


  • 2 strips orange peel


  • 15 ml (1 tbsp) red wine vinegar


  • Salt and pepper


  • Low-fat thick plain yogurt (such as Greek yogurt), for garnish


  • Chopped fresh chives, for garnish




Preparation:

1. Shred the beets, onion and potato in food processor fitted with shredding disk (or use a box grater). Place vegetables in a large saucepan along with chicken broth and orange peel. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes or until veggies tender. Let cool slightly. Discard orange peel.

2. Puree vegetables in batches in a blender or food processor until smooth. Return to saucepan and reheat until hot. Remove from heat. Stir in vinegar; season with salt and pepper to taste.

3. Garnish each serving with a dollop of yogurt and sprinkling of chives.

• Emily Richards is a professional home economist, cookbook author and a tv celebrity chef. For more, visit emilyrichardscooks.ca.

– With files from The Associated Press/ Foodland Ontario/ The Canadian Press

 
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