I have finally perfected my burger recipe. The key is to ensure the final mixture is not too moist – in the past I have cooked the lentils in too much water and this created a very wet burger mix, making the burgers too crumbly once cooked.
To make 8 burgers, combine:
- 1-2 cups cooked beetroot, mashed
- 1 cup raw oats
- 2 cups cooked red split lentils
To cook the lentils, I start with 1 cup of raw lentils, add 1 1/2 cups water, bring to a boil, and then reduce to a low simmer for 20 minutes or until soft. You can cook the lentils until they go mushy, since everything will get mashed and mixed together anyway. Since there is not a lot of water for the lentils, some may get stuck to the bottom of your pan, but if you turn the heat off and let them cool for a while then you will be able to scrape everything off. Just make sure to stir a few times while cooking to prevent burning.
You can add any seasonings or additional ingredients you like, including diced onion, peppers, or mushrooms (although these will increase moisture). I usually season with salt (or Marmite), pepper, mixed herbs, smoked paprika, and mustard.
Mix all the ingredients into a coherent paste, then form pucks in you hands and place on to an oiled baking tray. Brush some additional oil on top. Bake in the oven at 200 C for 40 minutes, flipping at the 20 minute mark. The lentils provide an excellent crispiness on the outside while the inside stays moist and juicy.