I don’t think so. In fact, I find vegan beet sliders to be one of the most endearing foods around. I got the idea to make these vegan burgers from our farm CSA box from Maya’s Farm and picked it up from Ollie Vaugn’s who had so thoughtfully organized for our community to keep getting fresh vegetables from a local farm. It was filled with Solid GOLD! The beets, in particular, were the basis for this recipe.
Once going plant-based, finding a burger substitute made from whole foods, has been a long term undertaking. And it’s not that I don’t love some of the meat mimic products out there. However, they can be expensive, and some of their health benefits are concerning.
My first forays into making plant-based burgers have been riddled with one major problem. THEY ALWAYS FELL APART while cooking. That has been frustrating, and from time to time, I would glance at a recipe to see what I was missing until I stumbled on two fundamental concepts through my experiments. Here they are:
Sort of simple however it did take some time for me to get there. Here is the thing about plants; they have a variable amount of liquid present, and this can be affected by how they are cooked before combining for the burger. Therefore, sometimes you need more or less of the dry ingredients.
So if you are making beet burgers for a herd of elephants, you can always use this ratio to get prepared. I recommend pureeing the cooked food first and then gradually adding the dry goods until you reach a satisfying blend. And by this, I mean you can pick up a portion of the “burger” mix with your hands, shape it into a disc, and it does not fall apart while you are doing this. If it does that, it will fall apart every further step down the line, including when you are trying to get your meat-based dad, to try it. And that is not a satisfying experience.
For the root vegetables, you can use any blend. This recipe is beets and white potatoes. For the dry goods, you can use bread crumbs (can be gluten-free), falafel mix, nuts, ground flax, hemp, and spices.
This recipe can help with a couple of concerns that come in when maintaining a sustainable plant-based kitchen. One aspect is food waste, and another is meal prep. Root vegetables are among one of the most heavily wasted foods in developed nations. So when you get them, steam them right away to use over several meals. Plant-based burgers are great to make a large batch and use over time. They also freeze quite well.
When it comes to serving, our household somehow lives to have our vegan burgers miniaturized. Not sure why this is, we just do. So to make as a slider, it is just a smaller patty. The fun part comes with all the variety of condiments that can complement the flavor combination you have used to create a vegan beetroot slider.
There is a beautiful canvas of tastes that can emerge. We used a barrel cactus jam that we got from a local vendor at the farmer’s market, and it was just so dang tasty everyone could not wait to get seconds.
See more of my garden to table thoughts on this post.