Thursday, January 22, 2009

Sweet Potato Burgers



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So, I found this recipe online, and while it sounded a little odd, I really liked the idea. I've tweaked it a bit, so here's my version that I made last night. It came out as a nice, hearty vegetarian meal! The sweet potato definitely gives it a the denseness needed, and surprisingly, it held together without egg or other binding agent. I rushed the caramelization of my onions, so they didn't come out quite as I had hoped, but still tasty!

Sweet Potato Burgers
(makes 4 medium burgers)

olive oil for sauteeing
2 medium yellow onions, sliced into rings
1 medium sweet potato (or yam), approx. 1 pound, washed & cubed (you can leave the skins on)
1/2 of a red onion, chopped
2 large cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 cup rolled oats
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp chipotle chile powder
1/4 tsp Spanish smoked paprika (the hot, not the sweet)
1/4 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp salt
few grinds of fresh black pepper
1 - 2 Tbsp cilantro, chopped (or use flat leaf parsley if you don't like cilantro)
1/2 cup pecans, toasted & coarsely chopped
whole grain buns (or bread of choice...I used challah bread rolls)
mayo, bbq sauce as condiments

-- In a large, heavy skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of oil; add sliced yellow onion. On medium-low heat, allow to onion to cook slowly, gradually browning and caramelizing. Remove from heat when done.(You can add a touch of salt to help draw out moisture, and a touch of sugar to help sweeten the deal.)
-- As onions cook, place sweet potatoes in a small saucepan, and cover with water. Bring to a boil, and let simmer for about 10 minutes or until tender. Drain, run a little cold water over them to stop the cooking, drain again, and set aside.
-- As sweet potatoes, cook, heat a medium skillet over medium heat, and add a tablespoon of oil. Add chopped red onion, cooking about 5 minutes until becoming translucent and tender. Add garlic, and saute for 2 minutes, then remove from heat.
-- In a food processor, combine oats, cinnamon, chile, paprika, coriander, cumin, salt & pepper; pulse a few times until the oats are finely ground.
-- Add sweet potatoes, onions/garlic, and cilantro, and pulse until well combined. Stir in pecans.
-- Form mixture into 4 medium patties.
-- To cook, heat a large, preferably non-stick skillet, with a little bit of oil over medium heat. Cook about 3 minutes per side, or until browned.
-- Serve on buns (I like mine toasted, with a little mayo & bbq sauce, and the caramelized onions on top. Enjoy!

The next go-around, I may saute the sweet potato a bit after boiling/steaming so they get a bit more texture to them. Actually, roasting them from the get go may be the way to do it! Adjust the spices to your comfort level. If you don't want so much cumin, use less... there are no rules here!

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