Back when I first went vegetarian and then vegan, there weren’t these vegan burgers that were jarringly indistinguishable from cow burgers. For as much as people today complain about “processed” vegan foods, well, we had veggie burgers like this: A little squishy, yes, but delicious, with some nice Middle Eastern seasonings. Honestly, it tastes a little like it came from a vegetarian restaurant circa 1973. I know I am not selling this too well but, honestly, sometimes you get a craving and there are worse things. Serve these on your favorite buns with all the fixings and prepare for a vintage vegan experience. It comes together super easily, too.
1 lb. extra firm tofu, pressed ½ cup walnuts, roughly chopped ¼ cup quick-cooking oats ¼ cup vegan breadcrumbs, gluten-free or regular ¼ cup sesame seeds 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast 2 teaspoons cumin ½ teaspoon smoked paprika ½ teaspoon cayenne powder (optional) 6 tablespoons JUST egg 2 tablespoons tahini 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice 1 tablespoon tamari 1 tablespoon minced garlic ¼ teaspoon liquid smoke Salt and pepper to taste 1 yellow onion, diced Oil for brushing cooking surface.
Add everything to a food processor or blender except for the diced onion. Mix until it is smooth and thick. Stir the onion into the mixture. Scoop into a lidded container for the refrigerator and allow to chill for a couple of hours. Form into patties with damp hands and cook on a griddle or in a pan. These will stick if you don’t brush a little oil on the surface. Cook until you get a char on one side, flip, and cook on the other side; this will take about ten minutes total.