Tuesday, July 27, 2010

The Holy Grail of BBQ.

Over here at la bouche we have been getting lots of requests for one particular recipe. Actually, I have been getting requests for this recipe from the beginning of its creation and there is only one reason why I never give it out. Because it’s involved. And I am lazy. And I don’t have a recipe for it written down… it is muscle memory to me at this point. But now that you are all here just waiting for me to give you the holy grail of bbqing, and it certainly is bbq season, I can’t knowingly withhold this from you any longer. You should know how hard it is for me to quantify this recipe and know that I am doing you a SOLID.

The Veggie Burger. It’s sweet, it’s savory, it’s tender, it is legendary. I don’t know about you, but I have a lot of friends who are vegetarian or prefer not to eat meat. Do not get me wrong, I love the cow. I think it is the symbol of America (I am from Kentucky, what do you want) and it tastes like heaven on a hot summer day, however, these veggie burgers. Are. Bomb. And you will not miss the red meat here kids.

Without further delay…
Whitney’s Famous Veggie Burgers
(yes they live up to this name, don’t sell a chicken for less than its worth)


• 3 tablespoons olive oil
• 3/4 cup fresh corn kernels shucked from the cob and finely processed
• 6 mushrooms, finely processed
• 2 scallions, finely processed
• 1/2 red bell pepper, finely processed
• 1 clove garlic, finely processed
• 1 tablespoon cumin
• 1/8 teaspoon garlic salt
• 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
• 1 cup fresh spinach, finely processed
• 1 carrot, peeled and processed
• 1 medium sweet potato, peeled finely processed (although buy 2 in case you need more)
• 1 egg white
• Salt and pepper
• 1-2 cups fresh bread crumbs (use as needed)


In your food processor, process sweet potato until finely grated. Next process the carrot. Set sweet potato and carrot aside in its own bowl. Process the remaining vegetables (mushroom, corn, red bell pepper, garlic, spinach, scallions) Do not be worried if these give off a little liquid. It is good juice and unless it’s like ½ cup of liquid, keep it. In a large skillet heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium high heat. Stir in the carrot and sweet potato, cook for 2 minutes. Add in remaining vegetables. Cook for 2 minutes. Add cumin, cayenne, garlic salt, salt and pepper and cook for 30 seconds. Let cool slightly for 5 minutes (so as not to cook your egg white) Add egg white and stir in enough bread crumbs so that the mixture holds together. (this is different every time. it depends on how much liquid its retaining.) Shape mixture into disks (slider sized is best for keeping them from breaking) and place on a baking sheet. Chill for 1 hour. These are really tender, so you have to be ginger when handling them.

Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in non-stick skillet on medium high heat. (Think of these as scallops, you want a really hot pan to sear the outside and give you a firm base.) and cook veggie burgers until golden brown on each side. I would say to cook these for 7-10 minutes per side. DO NOT mess with them unless you smell them burning before 7 minutes. They can break apart on you unless they sear.

Now, having tried to cook these in the oven and on the grill and in the pan, just trust me when I say that the pan is the way to do it. The grill (even when using foil) really makes them fall apart and when using the oven, you miss that crisp outside.

These pair well with about any cheese or are good on their own. Some friends have been using guacamole on theirs in recent bbqs, and that looked GOOD.

So I hope you enjoy the most powerful weapon in my arsenal. I am defenseless now and can no longer out-barbque you since you know my tricks. I will however leave you with one question. Who brought up the idea of toe touches and herkies at my birthday party?

Happy BBQing! Love,


  1. These are the BEST veggie burgers!! Love you!

  2. Hi Whit - long time fan of your blog, first time commenter. I have a quick question for ya: How many veggie burgers can I get from your recipe?

    Love - Blanche

  3. Hi Blanche,
    La Bouche loves you! if you make them slider sized, you can expect 12-16 per batch. (depends on how much sweet potato you have and how small you make them) Good luck!


  4. You know I will never take the time to make these myself (hell, that's why I keep you around) but let me just say AMAZING. And I love my meat.
    xoxo - I have pics of the herkie and toe touches too.... muahaha

  5. I can't wait to try these! I'm also on the hunt for a good veggie burger!

  6. Hi Teri! These are amazing, I especially like them because they don't have any beans so they don't taste terribly starchy. Best of luck!

  7. Looks good - even to a meatlover like me! Thanks for rockin' the BBQ