Category: sandwiches

White Bean, Walnut, and Sage Burgers

This is another one of those posts where the picture does not do the recipe justice. I’ve got to work on that. Trust me, these were the best veggie burgers I’ve made in a long time, and I’ve made a lot. I am pretty sure it was the flavor from the generous amount of sage and the texture from the chopped nuts.

I made these burgers using the recipe for White Bean, Pecan, and Sage Burgers from Real Food Has Curves, and just swapped the walnuts for pecans. The mixture came together in my food processor fairly easily. Instead of frying the burgers, I baked them at 375F for about 30 minutes, flipping halfway through. I am sure they would be great cooked in oil, but it was just easier for me to pop them in the oven.

I placed a burger in a whole wheat pita pocket filled with lettuce and cucumber, and then added a dollop of plain yogurt. It was a nice light summer meal, with leftovers for the next day. The whole combination reminded of falafel, and next time I may form the bean mixture into balls and bake them that way. But any way you make these they are bound to be great!

Celery Leaf Chicken Salad Wrap

CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) is a great way to support local farmers. Plus, picking up a large variety of produce each week helps to ensure you get your servings of fruit and vegetables. I strongly believe in supporting local food, but it wasn’t practical for me to participate in a CSA this year.

Fortunately, I’ve been able to live vicariously through others as they enjoy the experience. I love hearing on Twitter and Facebook what everyone is picking up from the local farms. One of my coworkers is part of a CSA for the first time. She brought in one of her items to share, but wasn’t sure exactly what it was. She thought the farmer said “celery something” and some Googling revealed that this is celery leaf. The leaves and slender stalks are part of the celery plant. This herb tastes like celery, but without the stringy texture. The flavor is stronger than I expected, almost peppery.

I decided to put the celery leaf in a simple chicken salad wrap. I combined chopped chicken with a dab of mayonnaise, a dab of mustard, and chopped celery leaf, using both the leaves and stalks. Then I wrapped it up with some spinach, just to make sure there was enough green. It was a very tasty lunch, and the celery leaf really did perk up the otherwise boring chicken salad.

Thanks to MJ for sharing, and I look forward to hearing about next week’s pick-up.

Pantry Salmon Burgers

I came home from Fitbloggin to a pretty much empty refrigerator. I made a super quick shopping trip so I would at least have some milk in the house, but I turned to my pantry and freezer for dinner. These salmon burgers were made on a whim without a recipe. The flavor came mostly from the salmon and thyme, with just a hint of garlic. I served the burger with a dab of cayenne mayonnaise and ate it with a fork, which added a certain elegance to a quick pantry meal.

The spinach adds both color and nutrition, but it’s really important to press the water out. Otherwise the mixture will be too wet and the burger won’t hold together in the pan. You might be wondering what you’re going to do with the rest of the spinach that you’ve defrosted, so I suggest you save it for a spinach omelet in the morning!

1 (6 oz.) can salmon
1/2 c. thawed chopped spinach with water pressed out
2 T cornmeal
1/2 t garlic powder
1/4 t thyme
Dash of salt & pepper
1 egg white

Mix salmon, spinach, cornmeal, and spices in a small bowl with a fork. Add egg white and mix well. Form mixture into 2 large patties. Gently place patties in a frying pan coated with cooking spray. Cook on medium heat until lightly browned, and gently flip the burgers. Continue cooking until the other side is browned, about 15 minutes total.

Falafel Burgers

I read a lot of food blogs, and I bookmark a lot of recipes. I could cook for weeks, catching up on the backlog of great dishes I want to try. But sometimes recipes just fly to the top of the list, like these falafel burgers from Oh She Glows. Trust me, you’ll want to make these ASAP. They are just a little spicy with cumin and paprika, and just a little crunchy with sunflower seeds. I left out the tahini, but increased the lemon juice by a bit.

I actually made mini-burgers, and served them on a bed of local lettuce and topped with avocado for dinner. But the burgers will be transformed into a portable lunch when stuffed into a pita, or perhaps dipped into plain yogurt and eaten by hand. There are a lot of possibilities here, and I am sure I’ll be making another batch of these soon.

Swiss Chard Hummus Rolls

All of the credit for this idea goes to Gena from Choosing Raw, and her amazing Collard Wrap Tutorial. I had some Swiss chard on hand and a craving for hummus, so I decided to give this a try. I started by whipping up a quick batch of hummus, and then spreading it on a Swiss chard leaf as shown, with shredded carrot and chopped cucumber. And then I followed the tutorial and rolled it up.

As you can see, I didn’t succeed in making a neat tightly packed wrap, but I did create a few rolls which made a decent dinner. Practice makes perfect, and this seems like a technique worth perfecting. How convenient to fit vegetables, protein, and healthy fat in a roll you can eat with your hands!

Black Bean Spread

I know there are a lot of recipes out there for black bean spreads, but this is the one I made with my new spices from Penzeys. I had no idea that just a few new spices could make cooking so much fun! Then, my sister used the spread to assemble some gorgeous wraps with cheese, avocado, and fresh Romaine lettuce. It was the perfect light lunch!

1 (15 oz.) can black beans, rinsed and drained
Juice of 1 lime
2 T plain Greek yogurt
3/4 t medium hot chili powder
3/4 t Spanish paprika
1/2 t cumin

Blend all ingredients in a food processor until smooth.

Apple Hummus

I really do have a lot of apples to use up, and hummus is one of my favorites. This recipe falls into the category of “very interesting”. There are a lot of flavors combined with the chick peas: apple, lemon, peanut butter, cinnamon, and cayenne pepper. I honestly wasn’t sure what I thought of it at first – I liked it, but my taste buds were confused! Kind of spicy, kind of sweet….

Oh, and I left the skin right on the apple, which is why there are red spots. This hummus did make a nice sandwich spread, and would be a good addition to a fall tasting plate.

Vegetable Sandwich at Castle Island

My cooking club had a picnic at Castle Island this weekend. Every couple of years we like to plan one of our events outdoors, something very casual with no real theme. Castle Island is one of our favorite spots with a large public space right by the water.

Although this has been the most excellent and sunny summer in Boston, it was cloudy for our picnic. But here are a few scenic shots of our surroundings.

We started our meal with wine, which was a little risky, being that it is a public place and we all look underage (you better be laughing!)

I brought all the fixings for a vegetable sandwich: baguette, sauteed zucchini and eggplant, caramelized onions, sliced Mozzarella, and Amore Herb Paste. Unfortunately, this picture is the best I have! The sandwiches were good, although the bread was a little ‘too’ chewy! We also had chicken salad, lentil salad, and fresh strawberries. It was the perfect outdoor meal, enjoyed sitting by the ocean with friends.

Grass Fed Beef Hamburgers

After going Meatless for May, I wanted to explore alternatives to factory farmed meat. At the Farmer’s Market this weekend, I spotted Treaty Rock Farm, which was selling grass fed beef from cattle raised locally in Rhode Island. The animals eat grass as nature intended, and as a result the land is less polluted and the meat ultimately has a lower content of saturated fat. But it still comes down to taste, right? The farmer had samples of a roast, and even though it was only 10am, I took a bite. Mmmm, it was good!

My Mom and I decided to get some ground beef to make hamburgers for the family. I shaped the meat into patties and set my Dad to work on the grill. I ate my burger plain, but my Mom dressed hers up with lettuce, tomato, and mayo.

The verdict? Unfortunately, the burgers were somewhat dry. The fact that the meat has a lower fat content makes it easier to overcook, and grills don’t offer a lot of control. Please don’t blame the farm for this one; I appreciate their efforts to create a supply of sustainable meat. After doing some additional research, I would opt for a different cut of meat next time, and use a wet cooking method such as braising. As always, I’ll keep you posted!