Lentil-Barley Burgers

For weeks now I have been craving some sort of veggie burger. We used to live off of our “Garden-Burger Breakfast” which consisted of a garden burger (sometimes fried in bacon grease, oops) placed on a piece of toast with ketchup, topped with a slice of cheese covered with a fried egg. It was divine. We haven’t bought garden burgers in ages so I decided to try and use up the pearl barley and lentils that have been sitting in the pantry forever and make me own veggie-burgers!

This had a few more ingredients than I normally use but they where all common items and since I was going to freeze some I didn’t mind spending the extra time to make them.

The recipe has you putting half the lentils in the food processor but I was feeling lazy so I just mashed them with my immersion blender. faster and sooo much easier to clean up!

At this point it doesn’t look really pretty but the lentils do work great as a paste to help meld everything together.

As I only recently started using barley here is a quick intro for anyone else who is clueless about it:

Barley is a wonderfully versatile cereal grain with a rich nutlike flavor and an appealing chewy, pasta-like consistency. Its appearance resembles wheat berries, although it is slightly lighter in color. Sprouted barley is naturally high in maltose, a sugar that serves as the basis for both malt syrup sweetener. When fermented, barley is used as an ingredient in beer and other alcoholic beverages.(maybe that’s why I like it, it does have a beer application)

The combined product didn’t look that good  but it was super tasty. I recommend tasting it before you add the egg and adjusting seasoning. At this point I think you could add just about whatever spices you wanted to. You feeling like mexican? Add some cumin, green chilies or jalapenos. Italian? Add some capers.

The finished product was very tasty, I mixed some sour cream with Pampered Chef Dill Mix and a splash of lemon juice as a topper and it was delish. As an added bonus Norah my 19 month old loves it! She will eat as many patties as I think is safe to give her. I think this is going to be a great way to get more “good stuff” into here diet.

I doubled the recipe and froze over half of it. As it is a bit involved I would recommend at least doubling it as these are going to make super easy freezer-to-pan meals.

Lentil-Barley Burgers
1 1/2 cups water
1/2 cup dried lentils
Cooking spray
1 cup chopped onion
1/4 cup grated carrot
2 teaspoons minced garlic
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
3/4 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
3/4 teaspoon salt, divided
3/4 cup cooked pearl barley
1/2 cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh parsley
1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
2 large egg whites
1 large egg
3 tablespoons canola oil, divided
Combine 1 1/2 cups water and lentils in a saucepan; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 25 minutes or until lentils are tender. Drain. Place half of lentils in a large bowl. Place remaining lentils in a food processor; process until smooth. Add processed lentils to whole lentils in bowl.
Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add onion and carrot; sauté 6 minutes or until tender, stirring occasionally. Add garlic; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add tomato paste, cumin, oregano, chili powder, and 1/4 teaspoon salt; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add onion mixture to lentils. Add remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt, barley, and next 5 ingredients (through egg); stir well. Cover and refrigerate 1 hour or until firm.
Divide mixture into 8 portions, shaping each into a 1/2-inch-thick patty. Heat 1 1/2 tablespoons oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add 4 patties; cook 3 minutes on each side or until browned. Repeat procedure with remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons oil and 4 patties.
Nutrients per serving: Calories 315, Total Fat 12.8 g, Saturated Fat 1.6 g, Cholesterol 53 mg, Carbohydrate 39.2 g, Protein 12.8 g, Sodium 539 mg, Fiber 9.5 g Calcium 60mg Iron 3.9 mg