I always feel the need to pat myself on the back when I make a “fake-out” meal. You know what I mean – these are all over Pinterest – meals that substitute super foods, grains, veggies where normally high-fat meats or empty carbs once were. It’s one thing to put applesauce in your cake recipe and another to create a satisfying meal that doesn’t make you miss your high fat/empty carb ways. Not that I have anything against those things, obviously…
I’m talking about a chickpea burger. I never order the veggie burgers in restaurants, but in college I went on a Bocca burger kick and quite liked them. So here I am, not in college, not eating a frozen veggie burger every night, but still wanting something healthy-burgeresque.
A recipe in my Fine Cooking magazine looked tasty – more like a grilled falafel instead of a fried falafel. So I made it one night and just loved it – also great as leftovers taken to work.
The only thing I would change is to make a cold creamy tzaziki sauce instead of the tahini sauce, which I found to clash with the burgers. We ended up not using the tahini sauce and instead adding some sour cream on top of our burgers, which was nice and cold, mixing well with the hot burgers and hot sauce shaken over the top.
Ingredients (serves 6)
- 1/4 c. EVOO
- 4 medium garlic cloves, sliced
- 2 tsp ground cumin
- 8 Pita pockets
- 1 can garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
- 5 T tahini, divided
- Juice of 1 large lemon
- 1 large egg
- Kosher salt
- 2 T chopped parsley
- 2 T chopped cilantro
- 1/4 cucumber, seeded, peeled and thinly sliced
- 1 medium tomato, thinly sliced
- Hot sauce, to taste
Heat oil, garlic and cumin in small saucepan until garlic is soft, about 3 min. Set aside.
Tear up 2 pitas and toast until lightly browned. Grind in food processor until fine crumbs form. Dump out and set aside.
In food processor, puree 1 can garbanzo beans and oil mixture, 2 T tahini, 1 T lemon juice, egg and 3/4 tsp salt until smooth. Add remaining garbanzo beans and pita crumbs, parsley and cilantro. Pulse until beans are coarsely chopped and mixture is well blended. Shape into patties and grill, covered, until heated through (this can be done in frying pan, too), 2-3 min. per side. I used a stove top grill pan.
Put remaining tahini in small bowl and whisk in 2 T water and 3 T lemon juice – it will thicken before it thins. This will be your sauce, should you want it.
To serve, heat pita halves until soft and fill with burgers, tomato and cucumber. Add tahini sauce and hot sauce to taste.
Do you like my fancy tahini swish I presented? Basically a food stylist, y’all.
Yum – the burgers are warm, the cumin is warm, the garlic and Texas Pete’s are hot, the tomatoes are cold and the cucumbers are crunchy. A nice combination – I’d like to call this a whole meal in a pocket. Maybe serve with a couscous or tabbouleh salad – or not!
Enjoy, friends! xoxo