Anyone who says plant-based meat tastes like the real thing is completely delusional. It may look like it, but the flavor is what counts. Without mentioning names, one has toxic canola oil in it and the other has ingredients I can't even pronounce. There's a weird flavor in the latter that I've never tasted before, and just writing this makes me grimace. I'm very content with my black bean burger, but decided it's time to come up with a CLEAN plant-based meat recipe.
Two tries and was happy with this result--and of course, the ultimate test is in a burger form.
1 box organic chickpeas, drained
1 cup cooked organic green lentils
1 box organic black beans, drained and rinsed
2 cups cooked organic baby bella shrooms (about 1/2 pound), rinsed and chopped--I add the stems, too
1 organic beet peeled and grated (or finely chopped)
1 cup GF oatmeal (I used Bob Mills GF quick oatmeal)
1 tbsp tapioca flour
1 sprig of fresh organic rosemary, finely chopped
1 tsp Himalayan sea salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp Aleppo Red Pepper
1/4 tsp chili pepper flakes
Organic Olive Oil to cook the shrooms
Cover the lentils with filtered water and cook until tender
While lentils are cooking, chop the baby bella mushrooms and add a dollop of olive oil (here, you want the oil or the meat will be too dry) to cook the mushrooms in--season with salt and black pepper. Sauté for about five minutes.
Put the chickpeas in a food processer and pulverize to a paste.
Add the black beans, lentils, mushrooms and oatmeal. Pulse until nearly mixed.
Add the beet and pulse again until you see the entire mixture turn crimson.
Add tapioca flour, chopped rosemary and other seasonings. You may want to abstain from adding chili pepper flakes until you taste it first, but adding this achieved the flavor I was looking for. I know Aleppo pepper is not a common ingredient for most households, but this is one of my favorites. You can add the chili pepper flakes instead of Aleppo pepper and hopefully, you'll be satisfied with the taste.
Mix until you have a paste.
Put in fridge for at least 30 minutes--I find it works better if you make it the day before and put in the fridge.
If you're making burger patties, turn the broiler on and cook each side for ten minutes.
Place each patty on a slice of lettuce and add whatever other toppings you like before adding another piece of lettuce on top--enjoy!