Dads & Burgers - has there ever been a more perfect match? (+ 2 recipes!)

Is there such a thing as a Father’s/Mother’s Day Grinch? If so, I may be it. Not that I walk around spurning my parents and stealing their presents – I just don’t get into the hype of showering parents with gifts one day a year. For Mother’s Day this year, I took my mom out to lunch and gave her a hand-made card with a sincere note written in it. Not exactly Grinch behavior, but certainly more stick-it-to-the-man than Hallmark would like. I did wind up picking up the check, but my mom said that the nice part about it was the actual lunch and time spent together. So, it really should come as little surprise that my plan for Father’s Day involves thanking my dad and grandfather with a visit home amidst my summer course studies, a fresh loaf of banana bread (which is still under top-secret-experimentation, but I think you’ll get the killer recipe for it before the year’s out!), and, of course, some sappy cards. It’s just how I roll.

I’m not really sure what I’ll be eating come Sunday evening, since aside from the banana bread and possibly a cole slaw recipe (to use up this heaping head of cabbage I can’t seem to use enough of in my fridge, despite eating some every. single. day), I’m leaving the food up to other family members. However, burgers are usually a safe bet, and I’d imagine the same goes for many readers’ celebrations. So, in honor of Father’s everywhere, I encourage you to make one of these two burgers – they’re not your average burgers, but enormously tasty, and they’re sure to say I love you better than any mass-produced card or obligatory tie could ever hope to.

First up to bat is The Best Black Bean Burger. Ever. At least, the best I’ve made yet. I ate mine drizzled with some hot sauce and stacked on top of a corn tortilla with some lettuce and zucchini and it was just out of this world. The texture was spot on – it wasn’t mushy or falling apart – and the flavor was almost perfection. Throw in a few herbs from your garden (or, if you’re like me, your spice rack) and you’ve got yourself one killer meatless burger.

Other Burger Recipes @ Floptimism: Flavorful Turkey Burger Patty Melt, Black Bean Burgers and
        Edamame Burgers
*Check out my second attempt at the Chickpea Pasta Casserole!

Killer Black Bean Burger, courtesy of Brown Eyed Baker
Yield: 4 servings (1 burger each)

The Ingredients
2 cups rinsed, drained canned black beans, divided
1 clove garlic, minced
dash of salt
1 large egg white
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
1/4 cup chopped red onion
1/4 cup cornmeal
cooking spray

The Method
Coarsely mash 1 ½ cups of the beans, garlic, and salt in a bowl. Place the remaining beans in a food processor with the egg white, pureeing for 30 seconds until well-combined. Add this bean mixture to the mashed one, stirring to mix well. Add in the cheese and onion, stirring again to combine. Divide and shape the mixture into four equal patties, each one roughly ½-inch thick. Coat both sides of each with cornmeal.

Meanwhile, heat a lightly greased skillet or grill pan over medium-high heat. Add the patties, cooking for 3 minutes on each side, or until browned.

The next burger recipe is a Turkey & Feta burger accompanied by a cool cucumber-yogurt dressing, reminiscent of if not more or less a dead ringer for a tzatziki. It’s fairly easy to throw together and both times I had it, I enjoyed it over a bed of salad greens rather than between the traditional burger buns. It was the perfect blend of savory and sweet, cool and hot. I added some mushrooms because, why the heck not, really? Overall, I have to say – way to go Pillsbury!

Turkey & Feta Burgers, courtesy of
Yield: 6 servings (1 burger each)

The Ingredients
8 ounces (¾ cup) fat-free plain greek yogurt
¼ cup finely diced, peeled cucumber
¼ teaspoon dried dill weed
¼ teaspoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon + a dash of pepper, divided
1 pound lean ground turkey breast
2 small garlic cloves, finely chopped
¼ cup finely diced red onion
¼ cup finely chopped fresh Italian parsley
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
6 ounces reduced-fat feta cheese
for serving: lettuce leaves, tomato slices, sautéed mushrooms, and/or burger buns

The Method
Combine the yogurt, cucumber, dill, lemon juice, and a dash of pepper in a small bowl. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, stir together the turkey, garlic, onion, parsley, 1 teaspoon of pepper, and 1/3 of the oil (1 teaspoon). Divide the mixture into 12 equal-sized patties, roughly 3 inches wide. Portion the cheese equally onto half of the burgers (1 ounce on each) and top each feta patty with a plain patty. Pinch the edges to seal well, creating 6 feta-stuffed patties altogether.

Heat the remaining 2 teaspoons of oil in a medium skillet or grill pan set over medium heat. Add the patties, cooking 5 minutes per side. Increase the heat to medium-high and cook an additional 3 minutes per side, or until the burgers have developed a dark brown, caramelized appearance. You can test with a thermometer to read 165 degrees Fahrenheit, but be careful to test the burger, not the cheese in the center.

Serve with the cucumber dressing, a salad, rolls, sautéed mushrooms, tomatoes – anything you can think of!

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