Its settled down now, but a few weeks ago it was raining nonstop here in Florida. We badly needed the rain, but it left outdoor dining options pretty limited (and gave me a good excuse to sit inside and enjoy the cloudy night!) Not having a grill anyway, I decided to go for a baked chickpea burger. The pineapple salsa was a last minute addition and made dinner feel tropical on a stormy night!
- 2 tbs olive oil
- 1 small onion, chopped
- 1 clove garlic, chopped
- 1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
- salt and pepper
- 1/2 tsp cumin
- 1/2 cup bread crumbs
- 1 egg (or equivalent egg substitute)
- Hamburger buns (I used Hawaiian sweet rolls!)
- Pineapple chunks, drained
- Red wine vinegar
- Preheat oven to 400.
- Add garlic, onion, chickpeas, and salt and pepper to taste to food processor and drizzle oil into bowl. Blend until it forms a rough paste.
- Empty food processor into medium bowl. Add egg and bread crumbs and combine.
- Mold chickpea blend into palm-sized patties, about 3 inches across and half an inch thing. If they cannot hold their shape, add a little more olive oil.
- Bake for 20 minutes.
- Drain pineapple through colander and sprinkle with salt. Let sit for 20 minutes.
- Move pineapple to bowl and toss with red wine vinegar and cilantro to taste.
- Serve on top of chickpea patty.
Rosé Strawberry Punch
Mix ingredients in a pitcher and serve!
- 1 bottle rosé
- Juice from can of pineapple, drained
- 1 liter Sprite
- Frozen whole strawberries (to chill your punch)
It was burger week for Amanda and me with our latest Distance Dishes date. While I don’t crave them often, something about that warm, summer air that has been moving in made me want to bite into a nice, juicy burger. While classic beef burgers are all well and good, we wanted to experiment with some alternatives for when red meat just won’t do.
Amanda got creative with a vegetarian version soon to come, but Mediterranean flavors were calling my name. With a heavily seasoned patty topped with a refreshing tzatziki, this burger packs an amazing flavor punch while still feeling refreshing. Biting into this delicious sandwich topped with fresh vegetables is quite the reward for standing over a hot grill (or pan).
One tip I will say Amanda and I both learned is not make your patties too thick or you’ll be waiting forever for that middle to cook. I had to delay our skype date because I was waiting for a safe internal temperature forever. The picture above is an eight ounce patty, but I’ve adjusted the recipe below. Learn from my mistakes 😉
Greek Chicken Burger Patty:
- 1 lb ground chicken
- 3 cloves minced garlic
- 1 mini bell pepper, minced
- 1/4 cup cooked spinach, chopped
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1/2 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp pepper
- In a large bowl, hand mix together all ingredients so that everything is well incorporated into the meat.
- Form into 4 patties and cook in a pan or grill over medium heat until internal temperature reaches 165°F. Then, they are ready for assembly.
- 1/4 cucumber, shredded
- 1 cup greek yogurt
- juice of half a lemon
- 2 tbsp fresh chopped dill
- Whisk together all ingredients and chill until ready to use.
- Ciabatta Rolls
- Red onion slices
Assemble as desired and top burger with Tzatziki. If you’d like, serve with the Grilled Balsamic Zucchini and enjoy!
Wine Pairing: For this meal, I wanted to try out a new pitcher and actually made a Summery Wine Punch (below) to add to the summery vibes. However, for a true pairing, actually a Pinot Noir might stand up to the tartness of the Tzatziki while also balancing out the flavor profile.
Summer Wine Punch:
- 1 bottle of dry white wine
- 1 qt pink lemonade
- 4 oz pineapple juice
- Fresh, sliced strawberries for garnish
Add all ingredients into a pitcher, stir and serve with ice.