The Good, the Bad and the Ugly!

veggie burger

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly!

The good, the bad and the ugly, I’ve heard it all. What I can tell you is that I ABSOLUTELY LOVE, LOVE, LOVE, hearing from people who have tried recipes from the book! It makes my day! I feel so blessed that anyone out there would actually take time to write me about a recipe and even feel so comfortable as to ask questions and/or give a review. That makes my day even more!

So the other day, this adorable gal from California, sends me a facebook message and says I’m testing out your veggie burgers but man, they seem really super duper dry. I instantly thought…hmmm, that’s odd ‘cause they are always almost too wet when I make them so I put them in the freezer for a few minutes before grilling them.

So I started thinking about what it could be that made them so dry. I’ve made these recipes hundreds of times. I thought it must be that some more wet ingredients need to be added. Simple, right? Well to me it’s simple ‘cause I’ve made and tested recipes for years so I usually instantly know what adjustments need to be made just based on sight and touch but then to someone who is just starting out on their cooking adventure, this is probably their worst nightmare. They went skipping to the grocery store, laboriously hand picking out exactly every ingredient on the list so they would be sure and get it right. They get home,meticulously lay out all the ingredients on their kitchen counter, take their time by reading the recipe all the way through and then tediously follow each and every step until the end product is reached and then, BAM, it doesn’t turn out like it should. How utterly disappointing and frustrating with a big sigh of UGH!

What I have learned over the years is that these are welcome questions/outcomes that absolutely must be SHARED. Why? Because it is the only way in life to get better. You have to hear the good along with the bad and the ugly or you will never grow. You must not take it personally, other than to have the foresight to step back and put yourself in their shoes and feel their pain that it didn’t come out like it was intended. You also have to asked yourself the question, “What could I have done differently to guarantee a better outcome.”

So I thought long and hard and I realized a couple of things that I could have done better in the recipe. I could have told you that I use crazy large eggs (I so badly in the book wanted to tell you where I buy my eggs but unfortunately unless I had the permission of this big box store, I couldn’t put it in the book). But, nothing is stopping me now! Confession time ‘cause this is just a blog and I can definitely tell you here since it is one of my preferred places to shop!! I buy my eggs at Costco. They are huge and I can buy what feels like a lifetime supply each time I’m there!

I realized that the size of the egg is so important in the Veggie Burger recipe because that would drastically affect the moisture of the burger. If cage-free or small or medium size eggs were used, it would certainly affect the outcome so the number of eggs would have to increase to 3 or equal 1/2 cup. What else could have caused it to be dry? The only other wet ingredient in the recipe is the “juice of one lemon”. Well, duh, I didn’t define the size of the lemon?!! They come in all shapes and sizes and produce variable amounts of juice! This is a recipe game changer so writing the exact liquid amount is even that much more important. See, how subtle things in a recipe can make all the difference.

This bubbly California girl just made my absolute day ‘cause I had one of those “aha” moments!  Look how much she taught me!  So happy she shared because the recipe has now been updated and will hopefully be easier to follow next time and will be the moistest veggie burger around! I will be sure and put the updated recipe on Pinterest as well!

BTW, I was so happy to hear her say that despite the dryness she experienced when making them, she said the “flavor was outstanding!” The above photo shows the outcome of her cooking adventure!  Thanks so much for sending a pic.  Didn’t she do a fantastic job of making it look oh so pretty and yummy!  = )

Keep the comments coming…the good, the bad and the ugly! They are always welcome, don’t be bashful ‘cause it’s not about perfection, it’s about “sharing” and “helping” each other through the beauty and the mess!

Veggie Burgers (“updated”)

Sometimes I like a change from the classic hamburger.  This is a great alternative and a lot of the times if I slap on a piece of cheese, lettuce and tomato, my family doesn’t even know the difference!

3 Organic Carrots
1 Red Bell Pepper
1 cup Ground Oatmeal (process 1 cup of Oatmeal in food processor until it is powdery) 1 cup Oatmeal
1 can Black Beans, rinsed and drained
2 Large Eggs or enough eggs to equal 1/2 cup
Rind of 1 Lemon (using sharp knife slice rind off of lemon and rough chop)
Juice of 1 Lemon or approximately 1/4 cup
2 cups Freshly Ground Bread Crumbs
2 Garlic Cloves
1/2 cup Fresh Cilantro
1/4 cup Fresh Flat Leaf Parsley
2 tsp. Cumin
1 tsp. Onion Powder
1 tsp. Kosher Salt
1/2 tsp. Black Pepper

Grate carrots and bell pepper in food processor using grater blade and then place in a separate bowl.  Change grater blade to the chopping blade and process 1 cup of oatmeal into fine powder.  Add to bowl of carrots and pepper along with one cup of oatmeal.  Process black beans, eggs, lemon rind, lemon juice, bread crumbs, garlic cloves, cilantro and parsley until roughly pureed.  Add in remaining spices and pulse until mixture comes together and is very thick.  Add to bowl of carrots and peppers and mix well.  If still extremely wet to touch, add in more oatmeal and/or bread crumbs.

Using a 2” cookie scoop, drop scoopfuls onto parchment lined baking sheet.  Will make approximately 16 burgers.  Wet hand and press down to form patty.  Place in deep freezer for approximately 30 minutes to an hour until easy to handle.  Spray grill with cooking spray or olive oil so burgers do not stick.  Grill on each side over medium heat for approximately 8 minutes per side.

3 thoughts on “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly!

  1. Just sharing how people’s comments help you grow is a great thing to remember to not take things so personally. You’re truly a great person E! Thanks for that reminder.

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