Monday, February 20, 2012

armenian lentil burgers

These are a very tasty veggie burger, and they're super fun to make!

Armenian Lentil Burger

1 cup French lentils
2 T plus 1 t olive or grapeseed oil
1/2 onion, sliced into two quarters from the stem
2 whole cloves
1-inch piece ginger, sliced into two pieces
2 cloves garlic, smashed
1 cinnamon stick
bay leaf
1 T olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1-3/4 t ground allspice
1/2 t ground cinnamon
1/4 t ground cloves
pinch cayenne
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 t grated fresh ginger
2 eggs
1/2 t salt
1/3 cup parsley, roughly chopped
squeeze lemon juice
3/4 cup toasted breadcrumbs

What cha do:

Pick through the lentils and rinse thoroughly. Stud each of the onion quarters with a clove. In a lidded medium saucepan, heat the 1 teaspoon oil over medium high heat. Add the onion quarters, ginger pieces, garlic cloves, cinnamon stick, and bay leaf. Stir, then cover and cook for one minute, until fragrant. Add the lentils and 2 cups water. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cover the pot and cook for 15-20 minutes, until the lentils are tender. Discard the aromatics (the onion, ginger, garlic, cinnamon stick, and bay leaf) and pour off any excess liquid.

Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons oil over medium-low heat. Add the chopped onion, ground allspice, ground cinnamon, ground cloves, and cayenne. Fry for about 12 minutes, stirring frequently, until the onions begin to caramelize. Reduce the heat and add the garlic and ginger. Cook for about five minutes more, until the onions are fully cooked.

Set aside 1/2 cup of the cooked lentils. In a food processor, combine the remaining lentils, eggs, and onions, and pulse until thoroughly combined. Transfer to a mixing bowl. Add the reserved lentils, salt, parsley, lemon juice, and breadcrumbs. Adjust seasonings. Using your hands, shape the mixture into five patties (or if you want to mimic the photo, you can make about a dozen “slider” mini-burgers).

To panfry: heat two tablespoons olive, grapeseed, or vegetable oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the burgers, in batches if necessary to avoid crowding, cooking 5 to 7 minutes on each side until browned and firmed.

To bake: Preheat oven 350-degrees. Place burgers on a lightly greased baking sheet for 15-20 minutes, until browned and firmed in the middle. Flip them over halfway through the baking time.

**I like to lightly panfry my burgers and then bake them in the oven.

We love to serve these with homemade tzatziki and these are best enjoyed when paired with some delicious homemade french fries. Enjoy!


iceclimbing & curry

Got out last weekend for some incredible iceclimbing at Kerkeslin Falls in Jasper. My first multi-pitch iceclimb, I'm hooked! Also made a delicious mutton curry from the Vij's cookbook...mmmm. Will post some pics soon!

Here's the recipe:

Mutton Curry
(adapted from Vij's cookbook)

* 2 tablespoons ghee or canola oil
* 1 tablespoon cumin seed
* 2 large onions , chopped
* 3 ½ large garlic cloves , chopped (about 1/2 oz)
* 1 tablespoon lightly crushed gingerroot
* 2 tablespoons ground cumin
* 2 teaspoons ground coriander
* 1 teaspoon turmeric
* 10 cloves
* 1 cinnamon stick , 2 inches long (add another 1-inch stick if you prefer a stronger taste)
* 1 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
* ½ tablespoon salt
* 5 ripe tomatoes , chopped (about 11/2 lbs)
* 1 cup plain greek style yogurt (the thicker the better!)
* 1 cup water
* 1⁄8; cup canola oil
* 2 lbs leg of lamb or 2 lbs goat meat , fat trimmed, cut in 1 1/2-inch cubes
* ½ cup chopped fresh cilantro

What cha do:

1.Put 2 tbsp ghee or oil on medium heat in a large, heavy stockpot. Add cumin seeds and sauté until they sizzle, about 45 seconds. Add onions and sauté until golden brown, about 8 to 10 minutes. Add garlic and sauté 2 to 3 minutes, or until golden brown. Stir in ginger. After 1 minute, add ground cumin, coriander, turmeric, cloves, cinnamon, cayenne and salt. Cook on medium heat, stirring regularly, for 5 to 10 minutes or until ghee (or oil) separates from the spices. Add another tablespoon of ghee or oil if spices are sticking to the bottom of the pot.
2. Add tomatoes and cook for 3 to 4 minutes, until ghee (or oil) separates again and glistens. Stir in yogurt and cook for another 1 to 2 minutes, then add water (add an extra cup of water if serving with rice). Bring to a boil, then remove from the heat.
3. In another large, heavy frying pan, add 1/8 cup oil. On medium to high heat, sauté lamb (or goat), stirring regularly, until you notice small, thin lines of blood on the meat. Remove from the heat and transfer meat to the stew.
4. Return stew to medium-low heat and cook covered, stirring occasionally, for 2 hours or until meat is cooked through. Add more water, 1/2 cup at a time, if the stew becomes dry while cooking. This should be a moist, thick curry.
5.To Serve: Just before serving, remove cinnamon stick and cloves. Stir in cilantro. Ladle equal amounts of curry into each bowl.
6.Pairing: Zinfandel.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Garden Goodies

Nics Mountain Pizza

Here's the much awaited recipe, be creative and have fun! The last pizza I made I used 3 cups of organic rye flour with a cup of white and the crust was heavenly! Be aware though when using more dense flours like rye that the dough will be trickier to work with, patience my dear :)


4 C flour (I use 3 cups buckwheat or rye and 1 cup white) + flour for rolling
2 tsp yeast
1 tbsp sugar
1/4 C olive oil
1/2 tsp chipotle
1 tbsp basil (or other italian spice, whatever you prefer)
11/2 C hand hot water (you need it warm enough to activate the yeast, but
not too hot)

Sauce (use a blender to mix):

tomato paste + 1/4 C water, add as needed to blend
1/4 olive oil
2-3 or more garlic cloves
1 tbsp basil or italian spice


bacon (good to fry up while the dough rises, buy the thick sliced kind!)
red pepper (I like to roast my red pepper while my dough is rising - roast
at 400 F until browns and smells yummy!)
red onion
artichoke hearts
mozzarella (I usually used 2-3 C of grated cheese)
feta (just to sprinkle on top)

What cha do:

Mix the yeast with the sugar and 1 C flour and let activate for 10-20mins.
Add yeast mixture to flour, add oil and spices and mix. If you need to, add
more water. Knead dough for 5mins. Cover with a light tea towel and let
rise for 1 hour in oven with boiling water placed in a pan below (it really
helps it rise!). I usually half the dough to make 2 pizzas and freeze one

Roll out the dough, spread on the sauce and add your toppings! I like to
start with the mushrooms and a base of a bit of cheese and go down the list
from there. Bake for 20-25 mins at 400 F or until cheese begins to melt, if
you'd like crank up the heat to broil for 2-5 mins to brown the cheese!

Halopchies (Ukrainian cabbage rolls)