Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Reuben Sprouted Lentil Burgers w/ Basil Dressing


A Reuben is traditionally a sandwich with meat, sauerkraut, cheese (probably Swiss or Provolone), and a dressing.

This is no traditional Reuben. Instead of meat, I chose sprouted lentils; passed up the cheese for avocado; and kept the sauerkraut and dressing part the same :)

Still on a mostly raw diet for a week or so more; however, I am now adding some cooked complex carbohydrates to the mix (like quinoa, lentils, sweet potatoes and other starchy vegetables). I wanted to experiment with sprouting (which was WAY easier than I expected) since I was re-introducing these things after two months of eating all raw.
In short, sprouting things like grains and legumes can remove phytases (which may prevent absorption of vitamins and minerals in our bodies). Therefore, this process can be helpful for people who experience digestive troubles from eating grains, legumes, and other foods high in phytates. Also, the sprouting process changes the nutritional make-up of what you sprout, for the better that is, especially improving protein and starch digestion (source: Critical Reviews in Food Science and Nutrition, a peer reviewed journal). In my adventures with sprouting, I will continue to update you all and let you know what I find out :)

I set out to make a lentil burger with my newly sprouted lentils, but was not going to be satisfied with just a plain lentil "burger" on my plate. I had some sauerkraut I had bought from the store that I was craving, and thus the Reuben Lentil Burger was born. This would also be great on a sandwich, or in a lettuce wrap. I just decided to have as-is, since I'm not doing breads of any kind right now.

For the dressing, I used this recipe (@ bottom of post) and added 1/2 cup basil leaves to it. You can use any dressing you like; I recommend staying in the vinaigrette family.

Reuben Sprouted Lentil Burgers w/ Basil Dressing

Yields: 6 (3”-4” round burgers)

I used the sprouting instructions found here

- 1 cup dried green (or can use brown- but not red- they sprout much quicker!) lentils

- 1 32 oz. mason jar, or other glass jar of similar size

- Filtered water

- I used a paper towel folded over the lid and secured with a rubber band. This seemed to work just fine, but there are fancy sprouting jars you can buy if you wish.

- After 3 days, like the instructions said, my lentils had ½ inch to ¾ inch sprouts!

Ingredients

- 1 ½ cups sprouted lentils

- ½ shallot

- 1 clove garlic, peeled

- 2 Tbsp ghee + 2 Tbsp coconut oil (or ¼ cup coconut oil)

- 3 or 4 leaves fresh basil (not sure about results with dried basil, but it might work- try starting with ¼ tsp)

- 1 tsp Celtic sea salt

- ¼ tsp pepper

- ½ tsp ground mustard powder

- 3 additional cups sprouted lentils (if using the recipe for sprouting above, this should be the rest of the lentils you have sprouted)

- 2 Tbsp oil for frying (I used coconut oil again)

- Favorite store-bought or home-made Sauerkraut or cultured Veggie of choice

- Vinaigrette-type dressing of choice (I used this and added ½ cup fresh basil)

- Bread of choice, or enjoy with lettuce, or as-is!

Method

- Begin sprouting the lentils three days prior, according to the instructions

- After three days, blend the 1 ½ cups sprouted lentils, the shallot, garlic, coconut oil (and/ or ghee), basil, salt, pepper, and mustard powder in a high powered blender or a food processor (if using a food processor, you might want to chop the garlic and shallot first) until pureed

- Then add the rest of the sprouted lentils and pulse (in food processor) to coarsely chop (speed 2 of Vitamix)

- Heat the 2 Tbsp oil in a pan on stovetop. Make sure the oil is nice and hot.

- You can form the burgers by hand into 6 equal patties if you want, but I just spooned in enough onto the pan to make the burgers about 3-4” round and about 1/2” thick

- Fry for about 3 minutes each side, or until desired browning is achieved.

- Serve with sauerkraut, avocadoes, and dressing- enjoy!

Or you can make a sauerkraut “burger” with sprouted lentil “bread” like I did below when I went back for seconds!

This post has been linked up to: Slightly Indulgent Tuesday @ SS & GF

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