Burgers, burgers, and more burgers!

We’ve been eating a lot of burgers recently. Pork burgers with tomatoes and goat feta cheese. Chicken burgers with rosemary and Romano and Asiago cheeses. And pork burgers with a cinnamon apple topping. I may have gone a bit overboard with the burger making.

Why have we been eating so many burgers you ask? Well, it’s because Bryan’s mother bought us a burger press for Christmas and I was excited to try it out! Before this amazing gift found its way into our home, all of our burgers were shaped by hand. Admittedly, I’m not very good at making burger patties that are even in thickness. Usually they would be thick and rounded in the middle and thin on the edges. Sort of like this:

Not anymore! The burger press makes them perfect every time.

I didn’t get photos of all the burgers, but I will be making many more and remaking some I’ve already made.

Here’s the recipe for our favourite burger so far.

Pork Burgers with Tomatoes and Goat Feta Cheese

Ingredients

For the burger

  • 1 pound of ground pork – approximate cost $2.50
  • 1 egg – approximate cost $0.25
  • ¾ cup of bread crumbs – approximate cost $0.25
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced – approximate cost $0.10
  • 2 tablespoons of sun-dried tomato pieces, soaked – approximate cost $0.50
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper – approximate cost $0.05

For the topping

  • 100 grams of goat feta cheese, crumbled – approximate cost $1.50
  • 1 pint of grape tomatoes – approximate cost $2.00
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt – approximate cost $0.05

Method

  1. Slice the grape tomatoes into halves and sprinkle with sea salt. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the burger ingredients: ground pork, egg, bread crumbs, minced garlic, sun-dried tomato pieces, and black pepper.
  3. Use your hands to thoroughly mix the burger ingredients (I’ve tried, a spoon just doesn’t cut it for this task).
  4. Divide the burger mixture into four portions and roll into balls.
  5. Using a burger press (or a flat surface if you don’t own one), form each portion into a burger patty.
  6. Cook the burger patties (I used a counter-top grill, but a barbecue, frying pan, or baking are also great options).
  7. Combine the salted tomato halves and crumbled goat feta cheese.
  8. Sprinkle a generous amount of the tomato mixture over each of the burger patties and serve.

Makes 4 servings (approximate cost: $1.80 per serving).

Spinach salad with beets, yellow peppers, and goat cheese

Bryan’s not fond of beets. I happen to enjoy them. So I was looking for ways that I could enjoy beets but easily leave them out of Bryan’s portion of the meal.

Growing up, we always ate beets boiled and topped with salt and pepper. We didn’t have them often, so I never got tired of eating beets the same way time and time again.

So, when trying to decide a new way to incorporate beets into a meal, I talked to Janne, from Livessence. She had mentioned a while back that she makes a salad with beets (apparently I only remember conversations about food), which sounded like a good idea. However, I didn’t really know where to start. Do you use fresh, cooked, or canned beets? Should I put any spices on them? What kind of salad do they go well in?

With some advice from Janne, I decided to make fancy salads with dinner, one with and the other without beets. The resulting salad was a great way to accommodate both mine and B’s taste preferences!

Spinach salad with beets, yellow peppers, and goat cheese

Ingredients

  • 4 bunches of baby spinach – approximate cost $1.50
  • 1 can of beets – approximate cost $1.50
  • 1 yellow pepper – approximate cost $1.50
  • 100 grams of goat cheese with herbs – approximate cost $2.00
  • Balsamic vinegar – approximate cost $0.25

Method

  1. Julienne the beets and yellow pepper.
  2. Crumble the goat cheese pieces.
  3. Divide the baby spinach, beets, yellow peppers, and goat cheese into four bowls.
  4. Drizzle each with balsamic vinegar.
  5. Serve and enjoy!

Makes about 4 servings (approximate cost: $1.69 per serving).

The Appetizer: Cucumber and Tomato Salad with Goat Cheese and Lemon Juice

B’s not a huge fan of lettuce. He never orders it on subs or wraps and calls it a ‘garnish.’ Because we had so much other food lined up, I decided we could skip the lettuce in our salad and enjoy the crisp, fresh vegetables. This was my favourite dish in the entire meal. I prepare the salads in less than 5 minutes, there are only a few ingredients, it’s relatively inexpensive, and it’s delicious.

Don’t believe me? Try this salad yourself!

Cucumber and Tomato Salad with Goat Cheese and Lemon Juice

Ingredients

  • 1 English cucumber – approximate cost $1.50
  • 1 package of grape tomatoes – approximate cost $2.50
  • 100 grams of goat cheese – approximate cost $1.50
  • 4 teaspoons lemon juice – approximate cost $0.15
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt – approximate cost $0.05

Method

  1. Slice the cucumber into quarters.
  2. Chop each of the cucumber quarters into bite-sized pieces and place into four bowls.
  3. Slice the grape tomatoes in half and divide slices evenly between the four bowls.
  4. Crumble the goat cheese and place approximately 25 grams of cheese in each bowl.
  5. Pour 1 teaspoon of lemon juice over each serving.
  6. Sprinkle each serving with ¼ teaspoon of sea salt.
  7. Serve immediately.

Makes 4 servings (approximate cost: $1.43 per serving).

Spinach, Beet, and Goat Cheese Salad with Vinaigrette

I purchased beets at the market again this week. I’m determined to find some interesting ways to prepare this vegetable. Recently, I posted about honey, balsamic, ginger beets and, inspired by the Raw Cooking Workshop that I attended, I decided that this time I would not cook the beets (which is very time consuming). I break a lot of the “rules” of raw foods, for example the tasty goat cheese that I added to the salad is not part of the raw food repertoire. I’m also not very creative with it yet. I’m sure that will come with practice though. For now, salad is a start.

Spinach, Beet, and Goat Cheese Salad with Vinaigrette

Salad

Ingredients

  • 2 handfuls of spinach, enough to fill each salad bowl about ¾ full – approximate cost $1.00
  • 1 beet, sliced into thin, spaghetti-like pieces – approximate cost $0.50
  • 50 grams of goat cheese, crumbled – approximate cost $1.75
  • Balsamic vinegar – approximate cost $0.10

Method

  1. Tear spinach into bite-sized pieces and place in a salad bowl
  2. Top with beet slices and goat cheese
  3. Drizzle with a balsamic vinegar

Note: I did not attempt to toss this salad. I prepared individual servings.

Makes 2 servings (approximate cost: $1.68 per serving).

This salad looked so good even the cat wanted to try! 🙂
(Unfortunately for her, I did not share)

cat wants salad

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