You all may have noticed that I don’t grill. I am fully capably of operating that beast of a cooking device in our backyard, but it is not something I enjoy. The Renaissance Man, on the other hand, loves the variability of it; getting the temperature, ingredients, and time balanced perfectly to create the ultimate burger, steak, or side. I love the things he grills, and so I will not de-throne him from “grillmaster” status.
Instead, I recently purchased a cast iron indoor grill and griddle (from Lodge, of course). This way, if I need to sear some steak or grill some chicken, I can do it quickly, without having to put on shoes.
The first thing I made was a black bean quinoa burger. I can’t compete with TRM’s burgers, so I don’t even try.
These were originally supposed to be vegetarian, but TRM expressed some hesitation, so I added ground beef. I think I would have preferred them meatless, but I’m not just cooking for myself.
Black Bean Quinoa Burgers
- 1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
- 1/4 C. quinoa
- 1/2 C. water
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 1/2 Lb. ground beef (optional)
- 1 egg
- 1/2 C. bread crumbs
- 2 tsp. Italian seasoning
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1/2 cucumber, sliced
- 2 Tbsp. olive oil
- 2 Tbsp. balsamic vinaigrette
- 4 large portabella mushrooms
- feta cheese for topping
Step 1: Prepare the quinoa by combining the quinoa and water in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, then let it simmer, covered for 25 minutes.
Step 2: While the quinoa is cooking, preheat you grill (outdoor or indoor) If it’s an indoor grill, preheat it on medium heat.
Step 3: Mix together the black beans (mash them a bit with a fork first), onion, ground beef (if using), egg, bread crumbs, Italian seasoning, and salt and pepper. Mush everything together and set it aside for a moment.
Step 4: Slice the cucumber thinly and place in a bowl. Drizzle olive oil and balsamic vinegar over the slices. Add a little salt and pepper and toss the cucumber around. Put it in the fridge until you need them.
Step 5: When the quinoa is done, mix it in with the other burger ingredients. Form the mixture into patties and set aside.
Step 6: Once the grill is hot, place the portabellas on it and let them cook for about 5 minutes per side, or until they are soft through.
Step 7: Remove the portabellas to a plate once they are soft. Place the burger patties on the grill.
Cook them until they are done through (or hot through, if there is no meat). It took about 5-7 minutes per side.
Note: My onions were not chopped finely enough, so a few of the burgers tried to fall apart on me. Don’t chop them like the are in the picture. Chop them super fine.
To serve, place a portabella gill side up on a plate. Top with some cucumber slices, then a burger, then sprinkle feta on top.
This was a wonderful, light meal with a lot of Mediterranean flavor. We both enjoyed it.
Do you cook vegetarian meals, even though you’re not a vegetarian? I’m curious if I’m alone in this…