I have been making different versions of vegetarian burgers for years, and my mom has been making them for years before that. This is one my mom invented, which is probably the easiest and tastiest of them all. The millet gets a lovely crunchy texture when the burgers are fried. They are a crowd-pleaser.
If you cook the millet ahead of time, this recipe comes together really quickly. Millet is an ancient seed, often described as a grain, that is mainly a starch. You cook it the same way you cook quinoa or brown rice. It contains no gluten. If it’s not in your local grocery store, try a health food store or buy online. These burgers also are vegan, and don’t use eggs to hold them together. The oats help to bind them, and while slightly crumbly they stay together remarkably well for being egg-free.
1/2 cup cashews
1 T dried, minced onion
1 tsp dried, minced garlic
1 T vegetable stock seasoning (we use McKay’s chicken-style seasoning — it’s vegetarian!)
2 T soy sauce
1 cup water
1 1/2 cups cooked millet
1/2 cup oats
1 cup crushed cornflakes (you can put into a sturdy ziplock bag and crush with a rolling pin, or blend for just a pulse or two in the blender)
First, cook the millet. (I usually do this a day or a meal ahead of time, and give the kids a bowl of cooked millet with butter, like I might give them rice, then use the rest for the burgers.) Cook 1/2 cup millet in 1 1/2 cups of water with 1/4 tsp salt until all the water is absorbed. If you pre-cooked your millet and it is now cold, heat it in the microwave so it is soft and moist before adding to the recipe.
In a blender, mix the cashews, dried onion and garlic, chicken-style seasoning, soy sauce and water until smooth.
In a bowl, mix the cooked millet and oats. Pour the blended mix over them. Stir in the crushed cornflakes. Mix well.
Drop by spoonful (I use a stainless steel cookie dough scoop) onto a hot frying pan (I use cast iron) with a little oil for frying. Flatten the top, and flip over so that each side is browned. Serve immediately.
They go great in a sandwich, or just on their own, next to a potato or sweet potato at dinner.