Middle Eastern Chickpea Burgers These chickpea burgers are similar to a Middle Eastern falafel. But the Americanized version of falafel usually resembles carnival food: they’re often deep-fried in some unhealthy oil. It makes me want to cry, because falafel done right is so delicious and nutritious. It’s all in the blend. Here the secret ingredient is basmati rice, which holds the chickpea mixture together and creates a complete protein. I love the mini-burger concept; the whole wheat bun is like putting falafel in a top hat and tails, and it’s perfect for folks who like the taste of beans when they’re broken down and combined with heady herbs and spices. Gently pan-seared or baked, these burgers are bountiful bites of health, especially topped with a dollop of Tomato Mint Chutney. MAKES
17 PATTIES 2 cups cooked chickpeas, or 1 15-ounce can, drained, rinsed, and mixed with a spritz of fresh lemon juice and a pinch of sea salt ½ teaspoon sea salt ½ teaspoon turmeric ½ teaspoon paprika ¼ teaspoon ground cumin ¼ teaspoon ground coriander ⅛ teaspoon ground cinnamon 2 teaspoons minced garlic 1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice 2½ cups cooked brown basmati rice 3 tablespoons finely diced red bell pepper ¼ cup loosely packed minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
Preheat the oven to 375°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Combine the chickpeas, salt, turmeric, paprika, cumin, coriander, cinnamon, garlic, ginger, olive oil, and lemon juice in a food processor and process until smooth and well combined, scraping the sides occasionally. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and fold in the rice, bell pepper, and parsley.