Thai Basil Burger
Food & Nutrition Services Director
San Luis Coastal Unified School District
San Luis Obispo, Calif.
Erin Primer, food and nutrition services director at San Luis Coastal Unified School District, received a grant from the state of California to educate students about plant-forward eating. She made this burger for a virtual cooking class, combining red lentils, sweet potatoes, oats, eggs and spices, then tested it with high schoolers. Even the beef eaters loved it and it’s now on the menu.
1 cup dried red lentils
2 cups shredded, peeled sweet potatoes
2/3 cup chopped cilantro
1 cup chopped Thai basil
1 garlic clove, minced
2 tsp. curry powder
1 tsp. ground ginger
1½ tsp. garlic powder
2 tsp. soy sauce
½ lime, juiced
1 cup oats
6 whole grain burger buns
1 apple, sliced
2 cups cole slaw mix
½ cup chopped sweet peppers
3 tbsp. mayonnaise
¼ tsp. salt
2 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
- For burgers, in saucepan, combine lentils with 3 cups water. Cover and cook on medium heat for 10-12 minutes until lentils are cooked but still firm. Strain and set aside.
- Meanwhile, in medium bowl, combine sweet potato, cilantro, basil, garlic, curry powder, ginger, garlic powder, soy sauce and lime juice. Add 2 cups cooked lentils. Add egg and oats; mix to combine well.
- Form ½ cup of mixture into ball and tightly flatten to form a burger patty. (Mixture will be slightly wet.) Repeat to make six patties; place each patty onto parchment-lined baking sheet and refrigerate 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile for slaw, in small bowl, mix well cole slaw mix, sweet peppers, mayonnaise, salt and vinegar; set aside.
- Heat a cast iron or nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1 tablespoon olive oil to pan and heat. Add one to two patties; cook 2 minutes on each side until golden brown. Repeat with remaining patties.
- To serve, top each bun with a cooked burger patty and an apple slice; add ¼ cup slaw mixture on top.
Photo courtesy of Erin Primer