Thanks, as ever, for the sweet and thoughtful responses to my last post. Yes, my mother is a remarkable woman. And yes, there’s a faint resemblance!

A few days ago, I mentioned that staycation week featured one stellar dinner. This is it. I developed and tested the recipe a few days before heading to my mom’s, and I was thrilled when it held up to a second try. It’s delicious, filling, versatile, easy, and high in protein, and it’s perfect for omnivores. It features two of my favorite foods — sweet potatoes and chickpeas — and you can make it either in the oven or on the stovetop. Impressed yet? The recipe is for sweet potato and chickpea burgers, and it’s destined to become a staple for me.

Most of the bean burgers I’ve experimented with have been make with whole or mashed beans. This recipe features chickpea flour (I used the Bob’s Red Mill brand, but you can probably find others), so that the texture of the finished burger is crispy on the outside and slightly soft on the inside. Could you substitute actual beans? Probably, but you’d probably have to tweak the recipe in other ways, so if you want to make this particular burger at home, go ahead and invest in the chickpea flour. It’s very versatile; if you have leftover, you can make some socca!

Sweet Potato Chickpea Burgers (yields 2 burgers — enough for 1 or 2 people, depending on appetite)

2 small yams or sweet potatoes
1/3 cup chickpea flour
2 heaping tablespoons flax meal
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp cumin
1 tbsp dijon mustard (optional)
1/4 cup fresh parsley, or 1 tbsp dried parsley (optional)
Dash pepper

1) Bake or steam sweet potatoes till tender. Remove skins, and scoop flesh into a food processor fitted with the S blade.

2) Add remaining ingredients to food processor and pulse to combine. Scrape the sides of the bowl down and process again, adding as much water as you need to make the mix smooth and uniform. Careful here! If you add even a tablespoon too much, you’ll end up with a dough that’s too soft to form into patties. Add the water sloooowly.

3) Stop as soon as the mix is even, and shape it into two burgers. You can either

  • bake the burgers at 375 for about twenty-five minutes, or
  • spray a pan with coconut oil and grill them on each side till crispy and cooked through. I prefer the texture from baking, but either works!

4) Enjoy!

My mother was mighty dubious when I told her we were having sweet potato burgers for dinner; lord knows what she expected! So I watched with nervous anticipation as she began to eat. You can imagine how thrilled I was when she looked up, smiled, and, with a mouth still full of her very first bite, exclaimed “mmmm!” Success! It always makes me happy to feed my mom something that she loves.

The fact that I also loved the taste was a nice bonus.

If you’ve already tried and enjoyed my homemade sunshine burgers, I suggest you start rotating this recipe into the mix. It won’t dissapoint!

So tomorrow at noon I head out to the Windy City for the HLS. I can’t believe the weekend has snuck up on me so quickly! I can’t wait to see so many of my blogger friends, and to meet quite a few others with whom I’ve only corresponded so far. I can’t wait for the weekend to begin.

As you guys know, I’ll also be presenting at the summit on Saturday afternoon (the schedule is online here). Caitlin and I are moderating a talk called Stop Staring Over Your Shoulder. The focus of our presentation will be the danger of self-comparison in the blog world. Can reading food blogs make us susceptible to food fads or diet pressure? Can they instill a sense of pressure to undertake superwoman fitness routines? How can they be directly linked to such conditions as orthorexia? We hope it will be a tough and hard hitting presentation, with tons of audience feedback (so if you’re attending on Saturday, start thinking of things to ask me now!). For those of you at home, the summit will be streaming live. I’ll be sure to post info on that after a full recap of my first day in Chi-Town later tomorrow night.

For now, enjoy your Fridays!


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