Walnut Lentil Burgers with Tarragon

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Lately, I've been into the whole SoulCycle craze, and have been loading up on even more high protein and nutrient dense foods, like these savory lentil burgers. Lentils are one of my favorite foods. I enjoy lentils in soups and other foods. They're just so delicious and packed with tons of protein. A must for any vegetarian. This was the inspiration of this recipe: Walnut Lentil Burgers with Tarragon. These burgers are an easy way to get solid nutrition in your diet. The lentils and quinoa form a complete protein, which means that they contain all nine essential amino acids. Walnuts are high in omega-3 fatty acids; Mushrooms provide essential B vitamins; and Tarragon is rich in phytonutrients. Just what you need for a healthier, happier you.

What You'll Need

2 cups quinoa, cooked 1 1/2 cups brown or green lentils, cooked (about a 15 oz. can) 1 egg (Vegan: 1 tablespoon freshly ground flax seed and 3 tablespoons warm water) 1/4 cup raw walnuts, chopped 1 tablespoon tarragon, chopped 1 cup button mushrooms, chopped 1/2 medium onion, chopped 4 garlic cloves, diced 1/4 cup flat leaf parsley, chopped 1/2 teaspoon sea salt 2 tablespoons of sallflower oil

These ingredients together pack in a mouth full of flavor. The Tarragon helps bind and enhance the flavors of all the ingredients, and is a wonderful aromatic.

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walnut lentil burgers, gluten-free, vegetarian, healthy, burger, healthy burger, lentil burger, recipe

Why Coconut oil? Olive Oil is good for you, but cooking with it isn't. All vegetable oils are susceptible to heat damage—much more so than the whole foods from which they were pressed or extracted. But in the case of extra virgin olive oil, the susceptibility is especially great. I made the switch from olive oil, and I've been using coconut oil for the past two months. In culinary use, coconut oil compares favorably with other vegetable oils with its high smoke point. These lentil burgers are so easy to make. You'll want to make sure that your lentils are cooked and drained, and the cooked quinoa is cool before forming the patties. In a skillet, heat about a tablespoon of coconut oil. Sautée onions until translucent. Add the walnuts, mushrooms, parsley, garlic, tarragon and sea salt. Sauté for about 5 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl. In the bowl of a food processor, process the lentils (be sure to rinse and drain them if you're using canned), 1 cup of quinoa and egg. You'll want to pulse in the food processor just enough to break up the lentils and quinoa so they start to stick together—about 20 times max. Don’t over-process.

You can easily make this recipe 100% vegan by replacing the egg with 1 tablespoon of freshly ground flax seed and 3 tablespoons warm water, approximating the texture to create a binding effect of an egg.

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walnut lentil burgers, gluten-free, vegetarian, healthy, burger, healthy burger, lentil burger, recipe

Transfer to the bowl with the veggies and add the remaining 1 cup of quinoa. You'll want to make sure to mix well and form into patties, 1/4 cup at a time (I used a 1/4 cup measuring cup). Heat a skillet to medium low heat and add a tablespoon of oil. Cook the patties, about 4-5 at a time, for 3-4 minutes on each side, until a golden brown crust forms. Let them cool a little before serving. This recipe makes 12 lentil walnut burger patties, and are perfect for Meatless Monday's. I like to eat them on their own, or wrapped up in Swiss Chard, but feel free to top them with your favorite condiment, if necessary. I love using Hamilton Creek Food's Just Mayo. It's a great vegan, plant-based mayo that tastes exactly like the real stuff, and it adds great flavor to the Swiss Chard and burger patties.They are equally as tasty serving them on a sprouted grain bun (for the gluten eating folks!) or gluten-free bread with your typical burger fixings (lettuce, avocado, tomato, red onion, etc.).

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Got leftovers?  Just throw them in a 250-degree oven to warm them up.

 

Ingredients

2 cups quinoa, cooked

1 1/2 cups brown or green lentils, cooked (about a 15 oz. can)

1 egg (Vegan: 1 tablespoon freshly ground flax seed and 3 tablespoons warm water)

1/4 cup raw walnuts, chopped

1 tablespoon tarragon, chopped

1 cup button mushrooms, chopped

1/2 medium onion, chopped

4 garlic cloves, diced

1/4 cup flat leaf parsley, chopped

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

2 tablespoons of coconut oil

Instructions

In a skillet, heat about a tablespoon of coconut oil. Add the walnuts, mushrooms, parsley, garlic, tarragon. Sauté for about 5 minutes.

Transfer to a large bowl. In the bowl of a food processor, process the lentils (be sure to rinse and drain them if you're using canned), 1 cup of brown rice and egg. Pulse in the food processor just enough to break up the lentils and quinoa so they start to stick together—about 20 times max. Don’t over-process.

Transfer to the bowl with the veggies and add the remaining 1 cup of brown rice. Mix well and form into patties, 1/4 cup at a time (I used a 1/4 cup measuring cup).

Heat a skillet over medium-low heat and add a tablespoon of oil. Cook the patties, about 5 at a time, for 3-4 minutes on each side. Let them cool a little before serving.

Notes

I like to eat them on their own, or wrapped up in Swiss Chard, but feel free to top them with your favorite condiment, if necessary. They are equally as tasty serving them on a sprouted grain bun or gluten-free bread with lots of toppings (lettuce, avocado, tomato, red onion, etc.).

Recipe makes 12 serving.

Cucumber Pico De Gallo

pico de gallo It's been a while since I last wrote and I have to say I feel a little weird, kind of like when you haven't seen a friend for a while and you have so many things to talk about that you don't even know where to begin.

Since the last time I blogged, a lot has changed. For starters, I'm writing to you from Tamarindo, Costa Rica where I'll be living for the next three months. Last October, my husband Gregg and I decided to skip renewing our outrageously high lease in San Francisco, we sold most of our stuff, and stored the remaining few items we own to live a digital nomad lifestyle, along with our two dogs, Teddy and Zoe. Since then, I've been getting a lot of questions from readers, family and friends on the topic of being a digital nomad. (You can follow along on my travel blog, Ramblist.com). In between this time, I've also started the year by taking part in a 12-Week Fit Challenge. So, you can probably guess the sorts of recipes that will follow in the coming days--super healthy, and nutritious. It's been great living in Tamarindo thus far. There is no shortage of fresh, local fair here. Each day is a fun adventure, discovering different places, and getting inspired to make meals at home.

I leave you today with a recent recipe I made, Cucumber Pico De Gallo! This is a perfect salsa to add over a bed of fresh lettuce or even nosh on as its own dish by itself or with plantain chips. It's very low in calories but extremely high in vitamins, minerals and very delicious.

Cucumber Pico De Gallo 2

What You'll Need

1 Cucumber, peeled and chopped 5 Small roma tomatoes, chopped 1/2 Medium onion, chopped 1 bunch cilantro, chopped 1/2 teaspoon salt Juice from 1 lime (or 2 tablespoons) Freshly ground pepper, to taste

pico de gallo ingredients

What You'll Need To Know

Toss together all ingredients except in a large bowl. Let sit at room temperature for 1 hour to allow flavors to develop. Taste for seasoning and adjust seasoning, if necessary. Service with a side of plantain chips or add over a bed of fresh lettuce.

Cucumber Pico De Gallo

Cucumber Pico De Gallo
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 1 Cucumber, peeled and chopped
  • 5 Small roma tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/2 Medium onion, chopped
  • 1 bunch cilantro, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Juice from 1 lime (or 2 tablespoons)
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste
Instructions
  1. Toss together all ingredients except in a large bowl. Let sit at room temperature for 1 hour to allow flavors to develop. Taste for seasoning and adjust seasoning, if necessary. Service with a side of plantain chips or add over a bed of fresh lettuce.

Caprese Salad

Caprese saladAs Summer is coming to an end, there is a certain something that I love about welcoming in the Fall.

If there is one fruit that I love in the Summer, it's tomatoes. Although, people normally gravitate toward heirloom tomatoes, viewing these open-pollinated varieties as traditional and authentic. But there simply isn’t a “best-tasting” tomato. The tomatoes are all good in their own way. But, come mid-September, the tomato plants are no longer the stars of the garden. The vines are starting to look like exhausted from their summer of bounty. Although, this week tomatoes have been exceptionally tasty. With the copious amount of tomatoes that are currently available, I decided to make a Caprese salad.

This timeless light, fresh salad combination is made with fresh mozzarella, delicious red tomatoes, and fresh basil. That’s why every component counts: You must seek out the best ingredients, use your fanciest olive oil, and sprinkle on the Maldon salt and coarsely ground pepper. This recipe is the perfect quick and easy accompaniment to any late summer meal.

Caprese salad

What You'll Need

8 ripe tomatoes, sliced 1 lb. fresh mozzarella cheese, thinly sliced 1/2 cup fresh basil leaves 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil 1/2 tsp. salt, preferably sea salt 1/2 tsp. freshly ground pepper

Caprese salad

What You'll Need To Know

On a platter, alternate slices of tomato and mozzarella. Garnish generously with basil leaves, tucking some underneath the tomatoes. Drizzle the olive oil over all, and then sprinkle with the salt and pepper. You'll want to serve immediately.

 

Insalata Caprese
Recipe Type: Salad, Starter
Cuisine: Italian
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 4-6
One of Italy's best-known cheeses, fresh mozzarella is soft and spongy textured. It is sold packed in liquid at well-stocked supermarkets, cheese stores and Italian groceries. Fresh mozzarella was traditionally made from the milk of the water buffalo, but cow's milk is used elsewhere and increasingly in Italy, as well.
Ingredients
  • 8 ripe tomatoes, sliced
  • 1 lb. fresh mozzarella cheese, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil leaves
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp. salt, preferably sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp. freshly ground pepper
Instructions
  1. On a platter, alternate slices of tomato and mozzarella. Garnish generously with basil leaves, tucking some underneath the tomatoes. Drizzle the olive oil over all, and then sprinkle with the salt and pepper. You'll want to serve immediately.