Sunday, August 5, 2012

Garden Harvest and Eggplant Veggie Burgers

Farmhouse Veggie Burger

It has been hectic keeping up with the produce and weeds in the garden during this unrelenting hot, humid weather.  The tomatoes and multiple varieties of green beans have been ripening what seems like all at once.  The cucumbers are still producing and it's always a surprise to find gigantic cucumbers hiding behind a leaf where I swear there was nothing yesterday!

Pesto for the freezer, ketchup and barbecue sauce for the pantry

I've been making sauces and canning whenever I have a spare moment to try to catch the harvest at its peak flavor. The recipes for the ketchup came from Jamie Oliver's At Home cookbook and the bbq sauce recipe came from my very spattered and worn copy of Nathalie Dupree's Matters of Taste.  I know I'll be so happy on a cold winter's evening to open up jars of pesto and roasted tomato sauce and fondly remember the days of summer (the filter of time will have completely erased how swelteringly sticky it really was :o) 

With the first of my eggplant harvest, I decided to make an adaptation of the Farmhouse Veggie Burger,  This is my current favorite veggie burger recipe, and it's the work of culinary art pictured at the top of the post.  The changes I made to the recipe are as follows:

- Instead of sauteing the eggplant, I sliced it with the skin on, brushed it with olive oil and grilled until tender.  I rough chopped the grilled eggplant, leaving the skin on (I like the added texture and color) and continued with the recipe
- added 1 1/2 cups mashed black beans (approx 1 can drained) for added protein and to help it hold together better
- I didn't have any bread crumbs handy so I used 1/2 cup oats plus 1/2 cup whole wheat flour instead
- to make this vegan, you can substitute vegan cheese or nutritional yeast instead of cheddar; smoked cheddar or gouda are also favorites
- to get a nice crust, I coated the patties in course ground cornmeal (polenta) before letting them rest

We piled them high on whole wheat sandwich rolls with fresh tomatoes, red cabbage, lettuce, caramelized onions and pickles and slathered with homemade ketchup or BBQ sauce - yum!  These freeze well if you have extras.  I put mine in the freezer before they have been cooked, but they could be frozen after cooking too.  Even those who don't particularly like eggplant (like both my son and husband) have enjoyed this.  I hope you will give this recipe a try.

Here is some garden eye candy from the last week.


 Italian peppers

 Heirloom tomatoes

Second crop of raspberries coming in

Lone sunflower that survived this year's crazy thunderstorms and the ravage of the squirrels.

Thanks for stopping by!

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