Saturday, January 8, 2011

Seven Down

Seven days in and nine hundred ninety-four to go.

Today I ended up doing one of those "have-to-do's" and not a "want-to-to."  

We have a reverse osmosis water filter system under our kitchen sink that has been running waste water down the drain like crazy lately.  The way the RO system works, clean filtered water is routed to the water tap or the holding tank and the crap that's filtered out is flushed out a separate line and down the drain.  It was running so much waste water that I had shut off the cold water supply while I tried to figure out how to fix the thing.  So, for the last week or so, anytime we want to run cold drinking water in the kitchen I have to crawl under the sink and turn the water valve back on.

This morning I did a little research and decided that, a) reverse osmosis systems are always going to waste some water and b) we probably don't really need reverse osmosis in the first place.  So I crawled in under the sink and after much rumination figured out that I could bypass the RO filter canister.  The water still runs through pre- and carbon filters before reaching the tap, so I figure we'll be fine without it.  Just the same, I'm holding on to the parts I removed just in case Denise decides to be dissatisfied with the results.

So, back to the list.  Tonight I am working on item #36; develop an excellent black-bean burger recipe.  (BTW, I'm also working on #1.)  Of course, I've made some moderately tasty BB burgers previously, but I think they need a bit of tweaking.  Tonight's experiment goes as follows...

Black Bean Burger - Take 1

  • 1 - 15-oz can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 - large clove garlic, finely minced or crushed
  • 1/2 cup vital wheat gluten
  • 1/4 cup bread crumbs
  • 2 Tbsp wheat germ
  • 1 Tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp Worcestershire
  • 1/2 tsp hot smoked paprika
  • 1/4 tsp smoked salt
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 cup chipotle porter (or any porter would do I suppose)
Place about 2/3 of the beans and remaining ingredients into a food processor.  Pour leftover porter into a frosty mug.  Drink.  Buzz the mixture in the food processor until it forms a ball (the ingredients, not the processor.)  Place remain beans in a bowl, mash a bit, then add the mixture from the food processor and kneed the beans into the dough.  Roll into a ball and chill in the fridge for a while.

(This is as far as I've gotten so far.  I anticipate the remainder of the process  involving forming the dough into patties, maybe dredging the patties in some more bread crumbs and then frying in olive oil for about 4 minutes a side.  To be served on toasted Kaiser rolls with cheese, jalapenos, avocado, red onion, tomato and maybe a little lettuce.  I'll be back later to let you know how it all turns out.  In the meantime I'm watching New Orleans vs Seattle - how does a team with a 7 and 9 record get into the playoffs?!)

An hour and a half later...


I have successfully demonstrated that this was not the recipe I had hoped.  

The burgers were actually pretty of tasty, owing more to the accoutrements than the burger itself.  

Note to self:  WAY too much gluten.  I actually ended up with twice as much gluten in this recipe as had been planned.  I initially mixed it with 1/4 cup of gluten, but the mixture was so wet I had to keep adding gluten to firm up the mixture.  

Second note to self:  the patties were WAY too thick.  Since the patties were relatively thick they didn't really crisp up like I wanted.  Kind of doughy in the middle.

Next time, higher BTG ratio (bean-to-gluten) and I think I will return to using bulghur instead of the wheat germ for a little more texture.  I will also probably drop the Worcestershire and maybe add some ancho or maybe chipotle chili powder.

Had the burgers been better there'd be a photo, but we'll have to wait.  Actually, I should have taken a picture they were beautiful if nothing else.


Blogger Garage Sailing said...

I'm always glad to see that you are managing #1 on your list.

You have 101 more resolutions than I do...congratulations on accomplishing 7 of them already.

January 9, 2011 at 11:41 AM  
Blogger khanten said...

I, too, have zippo items on a list. Too stressful. And bummer about the burgers. I was hoping they'd be yummy so I could try the recipe. (But who am I kidding? I had an appliance repairman here today to look at my oven, which has been turning the heat off in the midst of baking. He thought my oven was new. Uh, it's 10 years old. Shows how much I use it!)

January 11, 2011 at 2:13 PM  

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