Burgers · Musings · Vegetarian

Burger, Patty, Cake

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I bought some Gardenburger brand veggie burgers one night recently.  I was tired and didn’t want to cook, but we were all hungry, and we were all sick of meat.  Or something like that.

Anyway, I brought the veggie burgers home, cooked them up, and we pretty much devoured them. 

And then Bill and I started thinking and talking about them, and about how easy it would be to make our own, and why don’t we?  Why haven’t we been doing that?  What’s wrong with us??

We vowed, then and there, to pursue veggie burger recipes with renewed vigor.

And on Monday evening, we had homemade veggie burgers.

Alex has been sick this week – strep throat, yuck – and Bill and I have taken turns being home with him.  Bill was home on Monday, and with very little to do (Alex pretty much spent the day on the couch watching movies and napping), Bill found a recipe online and whipped up a batch.  They included shredded zucchini and yellow squash, oatmeal, and I don’t remember what else. 

And they were really yummy.  (Alex didn’t have any, though.  He had no appetite at that point.)

I was home with Alex on Tuesday, and I didn’t make any veggie burgers, because hey, Bill had done that the day before.  I roasted some chicken thighs and made a fabulous salad instead.  Alex was feeling better, and he had the veggie burger we’d saved for him.  He approved.  Said it was way better than the store-bought.

Yesterday it was Bill’s turn to be home again.

And for lunch – guess what – more veggie burgers.  This version was made mostly with black beans.  Bill shaped them to fit between slices of the bread I’d made recently. 

Alex was on antibiotics as of Tuesday, so yesterday he was feeling a lot better – and a lot hungrier.

I had some errands to run, and when I got home, Bill was making dinner.

Guess what we had.

This batch was made with cannellini beans, red bell pepper, cilantro, and who knows what else.  They’re the ones you see in the pan at the beginning of this post.

Yes, it’s been a little veggie burger crazy around here this week.

But in a good way.  An inspired, excited way.  We’ll make tons and tons of veggie burgers!  Especially in the summer, when we’ve got a wonderland of fresh vegetables in our back yard, there for the picking.  We’ll make different flavors…different textures…different ethnic profiles…whatever sounds good.  And we’ll freeze them – pre-shaped and grilled – so that when we need an easy, healthy meal, all we’ll have to do is pull a few of them out, reheat them, and devour.

Bonus – both kids like them, too!  Win-win!

So that’s what’s going on around here.  We haven’t created any of our own recipes yet – Bill looked around online and found some recipes that sounded appealing and promising and went from there. 

But the thing that’s been bothering me is the terminology.

Veggie burger.

Why burger?

I mean…well, crab cakes are kind of like burgers…only we don’t call them crab burgers. 

And then there’s the term “patty.”  Could you call it a crab patty?  Only if you’re SpongeBob Square Pants, and even then, it would be spelled differently.  Krabby Patty.  And the use of “K” in there just brings to mind the “krab sticks” you can buy at the store, which are really some sort of fish with a little red coloring along the edge to make it seeeeeeeeeem like real crab in some way.  Not that real crabmeat has a precise red stripe or anything.  So I really don’t see that they’re successfully fooling anyone.

But back to the veggie variety.  I mean…yes, a turkey burger is a burger made of turkey.  But then there’s the hamburger.  Burger made of ham?  Nope, it’s beef.  But a bacon burger is ground up cow with slices of bacon on top.  A cheese burger isn’t made of cheese, it’s made of meat with a slice of cheese on top.  BUT…you can order a mushroom burger, and sometimes it means you’ve got ground up cow meat with mushrooms on top…and other times, if you specifically order a Portobello mushroom burger, it’s a huge mushroom cap, grilled like a burger, in a roll with lettuce and tomato (or something) like a burger.  Like a burger made of meat.  Only it’s not meat.  It’s a mushroom.

Sigh.

Crab cake.

Salmon burger.

Krabby Patty.

Oh, my.

Is it a veggie burger?  Is it allowed to be called a veggie burger if it’s not made of meat?  Is a burger just…any kind of round food in sandwich form?  If that’s the case, then why isn’t a thick, round slab of liverwurst called a liverwurst burger?  And yes, I’m perfectly aware that I’m going off on tangents and sounding ridiculous.

But that’s where I am this morning.

I think it’s all the beans.

Which, you know, aren’t beans at all.

They’re legumes.

So…should the black bean and cannellini bean burgers really be called legume burgers?

Maybe I’ll just eat salad.

Do you know what the rules are?

2 thoughts on “Burger, Patty, Cake

  1. Mmmmh. Veggie Burger-Pattie-Cake-Thingies. Once you’ve decided on a name, it would be great if you could post your approved reciepes.

    As of lately I’m not much in the mood for meat and thus looking for lots of vegetarian alternatives to keep our meal plan diversified.

  2. Oh yeah, I’m fluent in tangent too. Don’t worry about it, keeps us wondering, keeps our minds alert. Yours or rather Bill’s vegie burgers look so much better than the store bought kind. Yummy!

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