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Farm Cafe Eggplant Burger for Meatless Monday!

Ever heard of the Farm Cafe in Portland, OR?! Well I’ve heard all about it! They make a delicious eggplant burger that is gaining much popularity! I haven’t had the opportunity to visit them just yet, but they are definitely on my go-to list of restaurants to visit!! This dish is full of phytonutrients and antioxidants making it the perfect meatless Monday meal that is tasty, hearty, and just damn good!!

Ingredients

1 tbsp olive oil
2 whole eggplants, peeled and diced in 1 inch pieces
2 scallions, chopped
1 tbsp parsley, minced
1 cup medium cheddar, shredded
1 cup breadcrumbs
3/4 tsp black pepper
1 tsp garlic, minced
1/4 tsp salt
3 tbsp olive oil

Directions

1. Over low heat in a non stick pan, heat olive oil and sauté the eggplant until grey and very soft, about 15 minutes.
2. Mix together eggplant and remaining ingredients, except olive oil and chill for 30 minutes in refrigerator.
3. Form into 6 patties, about an inch thick
4. In a sauté pan, heat 3 tbsp olive oil until shimmering hot, fry each side of patty until dark brown, about 5 minutes each side. Serve with caramelized onions (recipe below), salad greens, spicy brown mustard and the best organic hamburger buns you can find!!

Caramelized Onions

Ingredients

1 large onion, sliced
2 tablespoons olive oil, organic butter, or a mixture of the two
Heavy pinch of sea salt
Optional additions for extra flavor:
Freshly ground black pepper
Fresh minced herbs, or dried herbs
A teaspoon of honey or agave nectar

Heat a large sauté pan over medium-low heat. Add the oil/butter.

Once the butter has melted and is hot, add as many onions to the pan as it will fit. Sprinkle the salt over the onions. The salt helps to draw water and dissolve sugars out of the onion’s cells.

Cook the onions over medium low heat. Cooking the onions at a relatively low temperature (called sweating) allows all the water to release into the pan and then evaporate slowly. Stir the onions every couple of minutes, and adjust the heat if necessary.

Add in your optional ingredients, if you choose to use them, and continue cooking on medium-low to low heat, stirring frequently, until the onions are soft and anywhere from honey-colored to deep brown, depending on how caramelized you want them to be.

The process can take anywhere from 10 to 15 minutes to upwards of half an hour, depending on how many onions you are cooking and your preferred level of caramelization.

Top off your meatless Monday burger and enjoy!!

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