A recent e-mail containing great veggie burger recipes caught my eye! This is because I am just recovering from another less-than-positive experience making my own non-meat version of the ”burger” for a family cookout. While acceptable in the taste department, the texture and visual effect drew hysterical comparisons to dog doo…a few minutes of fun and laughter helped to keep a positive mood. Anyway, we grilled them up, and with a good thick slice of red onion, pickle and lots of ketchup (organic, of course), we got them down.
Things are complicated in the veggie burger world. Most of my trusted brands list brown rice as a main ingredient, and I am trying to avoid that because of the arsenic problem. Now I substitute barley for the brown rice. Textured soy protein (sometimes called textured vegetable protein) is another main ingredient of commercial veggie burgers, and I am concerned about the controversy over the health risks of phytoestrogens. Then, of course, there is always the GMO issue!
If you are as interested in a healthy alternative burger as I am, here are some ways to go: Try this recipe, substituting barley for the brown rice and skipping the cheese, or get a book of recipes like The Best Veggie Burgers on the Planet by Joni Marie Newman. I suggest trying the ones that sound good to you, find a winner for your family and then make them up in bulk and freeze for easy, nutritious meals with an added vegetable or two and salad. Please note that you can use tapioca or potato starch instead of rice flour in any recipe.