Green lentil, potato and mushroom burgers

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Disappointed with veggie burgers you find in the shops? Why not make your own for some great barbecues. Jacqueline shares her favourite ideas for creative veggie barbecues along with a delicious and simple recipe for Green lentil, potato and mushroom burgers.

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Bring out the Barbie!

No, I’m not talking about the doll. I’m talking about that piece of manly equipment, that’s dragged out of its dark hiding place a few times of year and fired up.

And what better time to fire up your Barbie than National BBQ Week? It runs from the 22nd May until the 2nd June 2013 and happily the weather seems to be co-operating this year.

Now for a few facts:

- Last year, it’s estimated we had 12 million barbies here in the UK following the Diamond Jubilee.

- Did you know that the word Barbecue can also be spelled Barbeque, BBQ, Bar-B-Que, Bar-B-Q and my favourite Barbie?

- The name barbecue is thought to have come from the Caribbean word barbacoa, used by the Taino people and meaning ‘sacred fire pit’ or from the French barbe à queue, meaning ‘from whiskers to tail’.

Whatever the meaning, there’s no whiskers or tails anywhere near our Barbie, unless a neighbourhood cat happens to meander by.

We are a family of vegetarians, but we still enjoy our Barbies. We love colourful vegetable and halloumi kebabs, coated in a spicy marinade; potato, pasta and green salads; almost charred veggie sausages in finger rolls with mustard and ketchup and a good old veggie burger on a roll with fried onions and relish.

This year I’ve been experimenting with my own burgers and the results have been fantastic. So much more flavour and texture than the rubbery discs that come from the freezer compartment in your local supermarket and the surprising thing is, they are economical and very easy to make.

My toddler loves my homemade burgers. His favourites are my Lentil, Courgette and Thyme Burgers my simple Chickpea and Coriander Patties and my Cajun Black Bean and Sweet Potato Burgers.

The best part about making my own burgers is I know I am filling him full of good stuff and he thinks he’s having a treat. It’s a win-win situation.

In honour of National BBQ Week, I have created a new burger for you to try, Green Lentil, Potato and Mushroom Burger.

They are super easy to make. Just boil potatoes, and then mash them together with tinned lentils, cooked mushrooms, oats, seeds and spices. There’s no egg or dairy in these tasty burgers and you don’t need any fancy equipment to fashion the burgers. All you need is a fork to squish it all together and your hands to shape into burgers. As those annoying meerkats would say, simples!





Rinse the green lentils well and set aside until you need them
Sauté the mushrooms in the olive oil and garlic until tender and juicy. Season well, then whizz in a blender or food processor until quite fine
Add all the ingredients to a large bowl and mash until well combined. Season
Flour your hands and take scoops of the mixture from the bowl, roll into balls and then squash into a burger-sized patties. Chill until you are ready to cook
Fire up the barbie and once it is hot enough cook the burgers until golden brown and crisp. As these are veggie burgers, you don’t have to worry about the cooking. They are safe to eat raw. I like mine fairly charred!
Alternatively, you can fry them in a little oil for a few minutes on each side or bake them in the oven until golden and crisp

Jacqueline Meldrum is a food writer and recipe developer from Scotland.

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