CARROT and CHICKPEA BURGERS

 “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” – Michael Pollan, In Defense of Food: An Eater’s ManifestoI love burgers! Though it isn’t a very honest love. I really like bastardized/ chat masala-d versions of burgers like the Wimpy’s Burger or the Maha Mutton Burger at Kents, which I’ve tried to imitate here. I’m also a big fan of the Indian vegetarian, aloo tikki burger. My favourite is a tie between what they serve up at Nirula’s and the Hariyali Kebab burger from Fasttrax. So though this burger patty is made of carrots it’s has the gorgeous, heavy handed, aloo tikki feel of the kind of burger I like. Add as much masala as you like, fry it up and enjoy…

Makes 6 burgers
Adapted from Good Food MagazineWhat you’ll need:

200 gms carrots (peeled and grated)
300 gms chick peas (soaked overnight and then pressure cooked for about 3 whistles)
1 onion (grated)
6 tbsp vegetable oil
4 tbsp lemon juice
4 tbsp garlic paste
4 tbsp chaat masala
3 tbsp tahini (optional)
2 tbsp coriander powder
2 tbsp ground cumin
1 tbsp red chilli powder
2 eggs
Salt to taste
Pepper to taste

6 burger buns
Butter
Serve with ketchup and mustard

How to:

1. Grate the carrots and dump into a large bowl (hereinafter referred to as the “Bowl”). Add grated onion.

2. Pressure cook the chick peas for about three whistles (if you’ve soaked them overnight) if you havn’t soaked them then just pressure cook them silly because you need them to be mush.

3. Pour the chick peas with a little bit of the liquid they’ve been cooking in and the garlic into your blender and blend to mush. Add this chick pea garlic mush to the Bowl. Break two eggs into the Bowl.

4. Throw in all other ingredients except the burger buns and butter into the Bowl. Get in there with your hands and mash everything together evenly. Shape into good sized patties and lay them out.

5. Heat oil in a flattish pan and carefully (I can’t manage more than 2 at a time) add the patties. Cook on each side for about 4 -5 minutes.

If it starts to fall apart when you’re trying to flip it don’t worry. You can just use a couple of spoons to press it back into some kind of shape. Same for when you’re done cooking and you think it’s falling apart on the bun – just use your hands and squish it into shape.

6. Toast the burger buns, butter them up. Place a patty in there. Add a couple of thin slices of tomato, lettuce, onions and mayo if you like and serve with ketchup and mustard on the side.

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