Tuesday, April 07, 2015

Tuesday Night Fun Cooking! interrupted edition

We took a little road trip over Easter weekend and drove to Lawrence, KS to visit my cousin Steph and her husband Eric. It was a grand time with much socializing (Steph's parents drove up for 24 hours to visit, which was wonderful!) and disc golfing and trail running and egg dyeing and general hanging out and having a good time. 


Nostril selfies and goofing off with uncle Eric
It was a lot of driving, though, and we were all pretty exhausted when we got home yesterday. We all had to hit the ground running today with school and work and whatnot, but even so, I didn't want to let the kids off the hook with Tuesday Night Fun Cooking! 

Tonight's menu was veggie burgers and buns, all from scratch. We started off well enough. The kids helped mix up dough for 90-minute rolls (recipe at the bottom of this post from a few weeks ago, plus I've copied it again below).




Unfortunately, soon after the dough was mixed up, Daniel started feeling unwell, so I set him up on the couch with the TV remote and got to work on the burgers. Anya helped a bit with the food processor, but I did the rest. 

(This has been such an awful year for the kids. It's been one virus after another every 2-3 weeks since November. I've been completely stressed out about it, too.)

Despite the stress and interruption, I do have something to share. These veggie/bean burgers are one of the kids' favorite vegetarian meals. I think we'll have to do them again sometime when everyone is healthy enough to help out a little more.


Burger. On a plate. With condiments in the background. My blossoming career as a food stylist isn't going so great


Black bean veggie burgers (my original invention, but I'm sure it's similar to others you'll find out there)
Note: these don't taste anything like meat, nor do they pretend to. Meat tastes like meat. Beans and spices don't taste like meat, but they make good burgers anyway.

  • 2 T. oil for cooking
  • 1 medium onion, roughly chopped
  • 2 tsp. garlic, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 bunch kale, roughly chopped (about 2-3 cups uncooked, I'm guessing) and other greens like collards, chard or spinach work quite well, too, if they are in season
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 tsp. ground coriander
  • 2 tsp. chili powder (I used ground anchos because they are mild)
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2 cups cooked black beans
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup bread crumbs
  • More oil for cooking the patties
  1. In a wide saucepan, sauté the onions in the oil over medium low heat until they are nice and soft, at least 10 minutes. 
  2. Add the garlic, kale and spices, and cook another several minutes until the greens are wilted. 
  3. Add the salt and beans and continue cooking until there isn't much liquid left, about 5 minutes. You can let the mixture cool so it isn't difficult to handle.
  4. Put the cooked bean mixture into a food processor with the bread crumbs and process until you have a nice mushy paste. It won't be attractive!
  5. At this point you can scoop out whatever portion you plan to use for one meal and mix it with an egg, saving the rest in the fridge for the future. Once you mix the egg in, I think it needs to be used rather quickly, but without the egg, the bean mixture should keep several days in the fridge.
  6. In a cast iron saucepan (or heavy non-stick pan, but I really recommend cast iron, as I've said before), heat a couple tablespoons oil over medium heat. Carefully scoop the bean mixture about 1/4 cup at a time into the pan. Let each patty cook for a few minutes before you flip it over.* When it's firm all the way through and crispy on the outside, it's ready to put on a bun and adorn with your choice of condiments! 

*Bean burgers don't hold together as well as meat. They just don't, no matter what I try. I have found, however, that when I make veggie/bean burgers, the mixture holds together better after a day in the fridge. I don't know why. I like making a big batch of these so we can cook up one half on the first day and save the rest for later in the week.


Mary Ann's 90-minute rolls (note: I used this recipe to make 12 rather flattened buns for tonight's burgers)

Mary Ann is my mom, and this is actually a recipe from her mother, so it's well-established in the family. This is a good one to try if you're not an experienced bread baker because it's relatively quick as yeasted breads go, and rather forgiving.

  • 1 c. milk, scalded
  • 2 T. sugar
  • 2T. butter
  • 1 t. salt
  • 1 T. yeast
  • 1/4 c. water
  • 3 c. flour (I used 1 c. whole wheat and 2 c. white)


  1. Combine milk, sugar, butter and salt.
  2. Dissolve yeast in water, then add to milk mixture.
  3. Sitr in flour but don't knead.
  4. Cover and let rise for 50 minutes.
  5. Form into rolls (15-18 total, depending on how big you make them).
  6. Let rise 20 minutes or so until puffy.
  7. Bake at 400 for 10-15 minutes, or until golden brown.
You know they're handmade when they're not perfectly round.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I'm so glad that you fit Tuesday Night Fun Cooking into your schedule despite All you have going on.. I look forward to it every week

Oma