Thursday, February 26, 2009

The michael5000 Kitchen #3: Wheat Germ Nut Burgers

Recipe #3: Wheat Germ Nut Burgers

Provenance: I would have picked this one up in the bulk section of a natural foods grocery store, probably the Lawrence, Kansas Co-Op in 1991 or something. I have no specific memory of having made the recipe before, except for a vague sense that I’ve used rosemary in SOMETHING and I don’t know what else it would have been.

The Recipe:

½ cup Wheat Germ
1 cup Rolled Oats
1 medium Onion
½ teaspoon Rosemary
2 cups finely chopped Brazil Nuts
4 Tablespoons Water
2 teaspoons Basil
2 Eggs, well beaten
2 cloves Garlic, minced

Mix all ingredients until well blended. Form into patties and bake about 10 – 15 minutes on each side at 350 F.

The Results:

First off, I tend to agree with Mrs.5000 that this recipe needs a new name.

Next, I just want to say that finely chopping 2 cups of Brazil Nuts is kind of a pain in the ass.

Thirdly, the recipe leaves me unclear about exactly what stage these bad boys are supposed to be at when you are finished. Are these patties that should be stored and subsequently grilled when ready to be placed on a bun? Or should a warm bun be ready as soon as they are done baking? The text yields few clues.

Fourthly, what I got once all ingredients were “well blended” was not something that adhered well into what you would call “patties.” I ended up with three or four “coherent clumps,” three or four “loose aggregates,” and two “piles of crumbs.” I should confess here to a nagging fear that I might have used two cups of Oats by mistake, but I’m not sure.

At this point, you are probably wondering how they taste. And the answer is: surprisingly good! And somewhat like hamburger, maybe, although my understanding of what a hamburger tastes like is 22 years gone now and I am not the most reliable witness on this point. We grilled them with a little oil and made them into cheeseburgers, but then pretty much anything is better with cheese so that's a bit of a no-brainer.

Quite to my surprise, I think I will keep and experiment more with this recipe.


Anonymous said...

Looking at the photo just now I thought, "mmmmmm, onion cookies." How homely they look when you can't smell them! I did think they tasted oddly compelling--an interesting combination of flavors and crunches.

jovaliquilts said...

A food processor is so worth it if you're going to be finely chopping nuts, and very fine nuts mesh well in patties like these. Have you ever cooked from Veganomicon? A few of us have a blog going where we are sharing our experiences cooking from that. The current rage is their chickpea patties. And Mrs. 5000 is right -- there have been studies showing huge differences in people's perception of food based on the name. Let's see -- Brazil nuts in a food eaten this week, how about Carnival Burgers? I developed zillions of soyfoods recipes where I worked and NEVER used soy or tofu in the name!

Rebel said...

My friend had a theory about ugly food and how it's often tastier than pretty food. I hope that is true in this case, because I also looked at them and thought 'onion cookies' or something similar.

I agree with the food processor suggestion. You could even pick up an electric coffee grinder, OR - back in the day we had a hand operated nut grinder thing that I loved playing with. Point being, chopping nuts by hand is a pain, get the right tool for the job.

How's the texture on these?

The Calico Cat said...

although my understanding of what a hamburger tastes like is 22 years gone now

vegetarian? never knew... (I often choose veggie options, but i am not opposed to a real honest to goodness hamburger either...)

BTW My first thought was "onion cookies" too! (Having first read the recipe & then seeing the results.

& I would second the use of a food processor...

Third - I've got a great split pea burger recipe...

Elaine said...

Your food processor manual will recommend against doing nuts with this tool. First, the bowl gets a stain or something. Second, you may get too oily a product, esp w/ the Brazil nuts. A chopper meant for nuts would be worthwhile...or just look for nut meal. I have used almond meal and pecan meal, but never have seen Brazils done this way .... Maybe if you slightly process the oatmeal you'd get a more "bindable" mixture. Just reading the recipe, I think it sounds tasty but not useful as a patty mix. What about baking it as a nutloaf?

Jenners said...

Ok...this was pretty funny to read but never in a million years would I even try this ... and I can't say the photo changed my mind.

How about "Crumb Chunk Patties"?

d said...

that is quite possibly one of the most disgusting things i've ever seen in my life.

and i was in the air force.

Jeff Laughlin said...

Bet it was delicious with an ice-cold Michelob.

fingerstothebone said...

This is the only place that you might've used rosemary? My dear boy, you're definitely missing out!
Rosemary, garlic, and olive oil...use liberally and frequently, and you're guaranteed a glowing fragrant complexion.

I can't weed near my rosemary bush without drooling.

Michael5000 said...

@Mrs.5000: "Homely" is kind. We will have to work on their appearance.

@jovali: A "food processor!" You are such a card!

Really, I have only the vaguest notion what a food processor IS. Kind of a superBlender, or like that? Not likely to hit the michael5000 Kitchen unless this cooking bug really takes off, safe to say.

@Rebel: I am planning on experimenting with the blender for Brazil nut duty next time.

Hey -- do you capitalize "Brazil" in "Brazil nut"? Somebody straighten me out on this.

@Calico: Not really a vegetarian, but I don't eat mammals.

@Elaine: My "food processor manual!" You two are killin' me!!

@Jenners: I'm here to entertain. We have settled for the time being on calling them "5000Burgers."

@d: You were in the Air Force? Really? Far out.

@Business or Leisure?: You belabor the obvious, sir. What isn't delicious with an ice-cold Michelob?

@fingers: I am sorry to hear about your drooling problem. However, on your advisement I'll start experimenting with rosemary in situations where I would ordinarily use garlic and/or olive oil. I may also consider replacing my current rosemary, which is quite ancient and may not retain much of its flavor at this point. Which is, you know, important in an herb.

Rebel said...

oh for the love of p-town are you using dried rosemary?? Don't you have a rosemary plant in Garden5000?? It's nearly spring there right? As soon as Freddie's puts their herbs out front pick up a couple plants for like $5 and plant them in a reasonably sunny spot - fresh rosemary whenever you want it!

And if you're not interested in planting some rosemary, at least pick up some fresh in the produce aisle, it comes in a little plastic box.

Elaine said...

Oh, c'mon. I have a 28 year old food processor (and it's not just a glorified blender.) It is essential for some recipes, such as Triple Crown Pie, and you never have to grate your knuckles into the cheddar, mozzarella, or cabbage.
I actually had to CHOP DOWN my rosemary--it was snatching up small unwary children who tried to walk past. (Honest!) It has grown back and it's blooming right now. Not only is it useful, it is a beautiful and fragrant perennial. Take Rebel's advice and plant a rosemary right now! but I suggest just one; you don't want to be out-numbered.