Italian Veggie Burgers with White Beans and Pesto

“There are, it seems, two Muses: the Muse of Inspiration, who gives us inarticulate visions and desires, and the Muse of Realization, who returns again and again to say, “It is yet more difficult than you thought.”  This is the muse of form. It may be, then, that form serves us best when it works as an obstruction to baffle us and deflect our intended course. It may be that when we no longer know what to do, we have come to our real work; and that when we no longer know which way to go, we have begun our real journey. The mind that is not baffled is not employed. The impeded stream is the one that sings.”  — Wendell Berry

Mr. Batch and I have been talking a lot about what we want for this new year 2017 —  what we think our real work is, and what makes our hearts sing. At the core is the intent to be kind. To heal things. To inspire with optimism. To rebel against meanness.  And most of all, to LOVE.

“Amor vincit omnia.”

Translated from Italian: “Love conquers all.”

Sending love out to you all!  And sending up my wish that we are all able to keep this phrase in our hearts today and in the coming days!


Italian Veggie Burgers with White Beans and Pesto

Yield: 9 burgers

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

  • Cook 1 cup of quinoa (Cook according to package directions. I brought 2 cups of salted water to a boil, added 1 cup of thoroughly rinsed quinoa, and simmered, covered, for 12 minutes. I tasted it to make sure it was tender, then drained any excess water. Then allowed it to sit, covered, for 5 minutes. Then fluffed with a fork.)
  • 2 cans of white beans, drained & rinsed
  • 3 hearty Tablespoons of pesto (Mine was homemade last summer and frozen. I did not add any cheese before freezing.)
  • Optional: 1/2 cup shredded Asiago or Parmesan cheese

Stir all ingredients above together in a large bowl.

Remove 1/3 of mixture and puree in a cuisinart/food processor.  Add pureed portion back to large bowl and stir to combine.

*Taste the mixture at this point to see if you would like to add more pesto, cheese or salt. 

  • 2 eggs
  • 1/3 cup coconut flour (I use this to avoid gluten. If you are not avoiding gluten, you could use all-purpose flour. Perhaps try increasing the quantity to 1/2 cup — coconut flour is quite fibrous and absorbs a lot of moisture)

Add to the ingredients in the large bowl and stir to combine.

Shape into patties, and place on a parchment (or foil) lined baking sheet.  Tip: Wet hands will help with forming the patties.

Bake at 350F for 30 minutes, rotating pan 180-degrees after 15 minutes (for even-cooking in case there are hot spots in your oven).

I kept 5 of these in the refrigerator and froze the rest, for use another week.

I served these over a bed of vegetables that I roasted with olive oil and Italian herb mix (zucchini, yellow onion, mushrooms and cherry tomatoes). For even more fiber & nutrition, I steamed some brussels sprouts and added them to the mixture of veggies.

As the tagline says: Make a lot. Freeze some. Now go play!

Keeping in the spirit of delicious Italian foods, I made a tiramisu-inspired cake to celebrate Mr. Batch’s birthday!  The two recipes that I consulted are this one to make the cake, and this one to make the filling and frosting.  We loved indulging in some sugar-y, gluten-y goodness!

We enjoyed an Ethiopian dinner out at a new-to-us restaurant: Addis Ababa

And I got to see a friend of mine from my culinary school days, when she and her son came to look at R.I.T.  How do my friends have children old enough to go to college?!?!?  🙂  We had a lovely Cambodian lunch at The Soup Spoon:

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  1. Hi Brenda, great photos. And love your introduction. Great words to live by. Larry and I joined the masses in Grant Park today and it was so reassuring how kind and loving everyone was. It was a great and hopeful experience. Keep up the fantastic work with sharing food ideas. I feel nourished just by reading your blog and enjoying the wonderful photos.

    1. Hi Karen — I’m so sorry it has taken me this long to respond! The rally in Rochester was inspiring and affirming! Just like you!!! I am nourished by my friends like you! xoxoxoxo

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