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Vegan for the Holidays

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 Vegetarian Cooking with Zel


July 4th Burgers and Mash

This fun extravaganza is not just a holiday dish made for its good looks--it's darned good tasting, too! Even the kids will find this burgers and mash appealing because it sparkles like 4th of July fireworks. Just the sort of meal for a relaxed July 4th dinner on the patio, there's enough patriotic punch to make it an official celebration recipe.

The best part is this dish can be made in stages, reheated, and assembled last minute. And, who doesn't appreciate a recipe with built-in ease!

The Burgers
While it's traditional to tuck crisp-fried falafel balls into a pita and slather them with a lemony tahini sauce, you can have fun breaking tradition and enjoy these baked patties in multiple ways--as salad, sandwich filling, mini appetizer patties, or with pasta in place of meatballs.

For this July 4th celebration, feature the patties on a platter and top them with the traditional colors befitting the nation's Independence Day holiday.

To bring out their best flavors and give them the colorful July 4th salute they deserve, dress the burgers with a fluff of Cauliflower Mash, a dollop of Sir Kensington's Spicy Ketchup, and dot the top with a few fresh blueberries.

Then have fun decorating the platter with the typical burger toppings like mustard and ketchup.


Yield: 12 burgers

    2 (15-ounce/424g) can garbanzos, drained and rinsed
    1 cup (240 ml) chopped onions
    1 cup (240 ml) minced parsley
    1/2 cup (120 ml) all-purpose flour
    2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
    6 cloves garlic, minced
    1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons ground cumin
    1 1/4 teaspoons salt
    2 teaspoons ground coriander
    1/4 teaspoon cayenne
    Freshly ground black pepper

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. (Gas Mark 6) and line 2 large rimmed baking sheets with parchment.
  2. Combine all the ingredients in a food processor and pulse several times until everything is well mixed but still retains a slightly coarse texture.
  3. Form the mixture into 1 1/2-inch (2.5 cm) balls and put them on the prepared baking sheet. Use the heel of your hand to flatten the balls into patties about 3 inches in diameter.
  4. Bake the burgers for 10 to 12 minutes, and then, use a metal spatula to turn them over. Switch oven-rack positions of the baking sheets and bake for 12 minutes longer.


    1 small head cauliflower, cut into florets

    2 to 3 tablespoons prepared vegan sour cream or homemade Tofu Sour Cream (recipe below)
    Unsweetened soymilk
    Salt and pepper to taste
    Sir Kensington's Spicy Ketchup
    Fresh blueberries
    Minced parsley

  1. Put the cauliflower florets in a 2-quart (2 liter) saucepan with about 1/2-inch (1.3 cm) water. Cover the pan and bring to a boil over high heat. Immediately, reduce the heat to low and steam the cauliflower for about 4 to 6 minutes, or until very tender when pierced with a fork.
  2. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the cooked cauliflower to a bowl. Add the sour cream and enough soymilk to moisten. Using a potato masher, mash the cauliflower until smooth and creamy or chunky, as desired. Then, season with salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Spoon a generous dollop of the mashed cauliflower over each burger, leaving a border of the burger exposed.
  4. Spoon a very small dollop of the ketchup over the cauliflower, leaving plenty of the cauliflower exposed.
  5. Decorate the cauliflower with some of the blueberries.
  6. If there is enough mashed cauliflower left, decorate the platter with a border of alternating mounds of the cauliflower and spicy ketchup. Finish with a skewer of blueberries and strawberries to complete the July 4th color palate.


Yield: 1 1/2 cups

    1 (12.3-ounce/349g) box of Morinu Extra-firm Silken Tofu, well drained
    1/4 cup (60 ml) fresh lemon juice
    1/2 teaspoon distilled white vinegar
    1/4 teaspoon salt

  1. Cut off the top of the box along the dotted lines and drain all the excess water from the package. Empty the package into the food processor.
  2. Add the remaining ingredients to the food processor and process until smooth and creamy. Transfer to a bowl, cover, and refrigerate until ready to use.

Click here for past cookingwithzel@home.comeonin recipes

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