Southwestern Veggie Burgers

I had planned on doing a lot more reading this summer. I'm currently in the middle of three books, one of which I started way back in May. With house projects and photo shoots and, well, the distractions of the news (and the time suck of scrolling through Facebook), I've failed to make room for it (or anything else, really... which is why I've only posted a handful of times over the last couple of months).  I know that summer isn't over yet... and what remains will hopefully be filled with swimming, grilling, and reading. 

This weekend should include all of those things as we have some friends coming down. All are bloggers and, therefore, we've already planned out our meals and cocktails. There's talk of homemade ice cream, lobster tater tots (a recipe Dan's developing), and lots and lots of cheese. Someone's even bringing food-shaped pool floats (which will make for some fun Instagram posts). 

I'm not sure what came over me, but I was really feeling like I needed a veggie burger in my life. It doesn't happen often. Like, once every couple of years. I knew the burger itself needed to be packed with bold spices and it'd be topped with a grilled corn salsa (one of my favorite summer dishes). These southwestern veggie burgers are very filling and have a great texture (they aren't mushy and don't fall apart when you pick them up).  

SOUTHWESTERN VEGGIE BURGERS

Notes
The 1 tablespoon of salt is correct. Given the amount of vegetables and the unsalted black beans, it needs the seasoning. If you use salted black beans, you can cut the salt to 1 1/2 teaspoons.

Servings
4-6 veggie burgers (depending on the size of the patties)

Ingredients
1 1/2 cups cooked brown rice
1 cup grated zucchini (from 1 small zucchini)
1 cup grated carrot (approximately 2 carrots)
1/4 cup chopped red pepper
1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro
2 garlic cloves, minced
16 oz canned unsalted black beans, rinsed and drained
1 1/2 cups oat flour
1 tablespoon Kosher salt
2 teaspoons chipotle chili powder
2 teaspoons smoked paprika
2 teaspoons cumin
2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 eggs
Olive oil

Burger buns
1 avocado
Grilled corn salsa (see recipe below

Directions
1. Put the grated vegetables, cilantro, garlic, and black beans into a large mixing bowl. In another bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients.

2. Add the eggs to the vegetables and mix until well combined. Stir dry ingredients into vegetable mixture. 

3. Prepare a baking sheet with parchment paper. Preheat oven to 375. 

4. Form the mixture into four patties and set aside. Heat 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil in a large skillet set over medium-high heat. Fry patties for 2 minutes on each side and then transfer to the prepared baking sheet. 

5. Bake patties in the oven for 15-20 minutes to allow them to cook all the way through. 

6. Serve burgers on a bun with sliced avocado and corn salsa.
 

GRILLED CORN SALSA

Servings
4-6

Ingredients
4 ears corn, shucked
2 Roma tomatoes, diced
1 jalapeño
1 large red onion, peeled and sliced into 1-inch thick rings
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
Juice of 1 lime
Salt

Directions
1. Brush corn and red onion with olive oil.

2. Set the grill to 450 degrees F and preheat for 10 minutes. Place the corn, red onion, and jalapeño onto the grill. Cook the vegetables, rotating or flipping occasionally, until they've charred evenly on all sides. Remove from the grill.

3. Shave corn into a mixing bowl. Chop up the jalapeno and red onion and add to bowl. Add diced tomato, cilantro, and lime juice. Season with salt, to taste. 

Linguine with Clams

LINGUINE WITH CLAMS

And, just like that, we're in August. How the heck did that happen? The other night, I told Eric that we need to make more of an effort to enjoy the Cape house. The whole family has put in a lot of work this year, but it's important that we take a little time off to relax. Even a swim at the end of the day would do a lot to help us decompress. I don't want the summer to go by and for us to feel like we didn't take some time for ourselves.  The hard work is paying off though. The kitchen is done (wooooo) and now one of the bathrooms is being tackled. It's very exciting to be staying there. I'm starting to get used to it... but it's also a little weird still.

I'm not usually one for pasta in the summer, but something came over me the other day and I just needed a big bowl of linguine with clams. The addition of chopped tomatoes, fresh arugula, and a bunch of parsley keep it from being too heavy. It's a dish best served to dinner guests al fresco with a bottle of red. But it works just as well for one or two, providing leftovers for at least another meal. And who doesn't love leftovers? 

LINGUINE WITH CLAMS-4653.jpg

LINGUINE WITH CLAMS

SERVINGS
Serves 4-6

INGREDIENTS
1 pound linguine
2 pounds littleneck clams
1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
8 cloves of garlic, minced
4 Roma tomatoes, coarsely chopped
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes, optional
1/3 cup dry white wine
2 cups arugula
2 tablespoons fresh parsley, finely chopped
2 tablespoons butter
Salt
Olive oil
Grated parmesan cheese, optional

DIRECTIONS
1. Bring a 8 quarts of water to a boil. Add salt, olive oil and the linguine and cook according to packaging, approximately 9 minutes. 

2. Meanwhile, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large Dutch oven (or a large lidded pot) set over medium-high heat. Add chopped onion and season with 1/4 teaspoon salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 3 minutes. Add tomatoes and garlic and cook for another 5 minutes.

3. Add clams and white wine. Cover the Dutch oven and cook for approximately 5 minutes, or until all the clams have are wide open. Remove the lid and set heat to high and bring to a boil. Cook sauce until liquid has reduced a little, about 4 minutes. 

4. Once the pasta is done cooking, drain linguine and add to pan with the sauce. Add butter, chopped parsley and arugula and toss to combine. 

5. Serve pasta in bowls, along with a few clams and, if desired, grated Parmesan cheese.