Yvonne Spence loves to create healthy recipes and believes we don't have to give up enjoyment when we give up refined sugar.
A Recipe for Parents and Kids to Make Together
This recipe uses leftover risotto and just a few other ingredients. It is extremely easy to make and is a great recipe for kids to help with.
If you make a large batch of risotto on Sunday, you can then turn the leftovers into tasty burgers on Monday, with minimal effort. When making the risotto, make about one and a half the amount you would usually do, and this will leave enough for the burgers. All the measurements in this recipe are approximate, as this really doesn’t need to be accurately measured! (Told you it’s easy!)
You can use any risotto recipe for this dish. The burgers work best with cold risotto, as the rice sticks together well. When reheating cooled rice, it is important to make sure it is thoroughly cooked through, as poorly reheated rice can result in food poisoning. As long as you follow the instructions here, all will be well!
Kids will probably enjoy shaping the burgers and getting messy. But if they don’t, you can greatly reduce the mess by scooping up the mixture with a tablespoon and only lightly shaping them with your fingers. This makes smaller burgers than you would buy in a fast-food outlet; one would be enough for a small child, while adults and teenagers will need two. The recipe makes eight burgers.
I have used the North American cups system to measure the risotto. Readers outside North America can use a standard measuring jug: 1 cup equals 8 fluid ounces or 225 milliliters.
- 3 cups of leftover cold risotto
- 1/2 cup/3 ounces/85 grams nuts or seeds (We used cashew nuts and sunflower seeds, but you can use any nuts you’d like.)
- 1/2 cup/3 ounces/85 grams cheese
- 1 egg
- Some flour or breadcrumbs
Step 1. Preparing the Mixture
Using a potato masher, mash the risotto until any large chunks of vegetables are broken up, and the mixture is fairly sticky.
Kid’s Job With Adult Supervision:
Grind the nuts or seeds in a food processor until the pieces are small and even.
If you don’t have a food processor, grind the nuts in a pestle and mortar, or place them in a bowl and bash them with the end of a rolling pin!
Adult or Older Child’s Job:
Grate the cheese finely.
Mix the nuts and cheese into the risotto mixture.
Step 2. Shaping and Coating the Burgers
Kid’s Job With Some Adult Supervision:
Prepare Your Coating:
- Beat the egg in a shallow bowl. (A cereal or soup bowl is ideal.)
- Sprinkle flour onto a plate to cover it thickly.
- Place the bowl and plate close to each other.
- Using a tablespoon, scoop up spoonfuls of the mixture and shape it into rounds. (See photo below.)
- Dip each burger in the egg.
- Lay each burger in the flour, and turn it over to make sure both sides are coated.
Step 3. Cooking the Burgers
Adult’s Job (Or Kid’s With Careful Supervision):
Fry the burgers for around 5 minutes each until each side is golden brown. The burger will soften a little during cooking, so use a spatula or fish slice to turn them to avoid them breaking up.
Serve with new potatoes and vegetables or French fries and salad.
Variations for Those With Allergies or Vegan Needs
- Nut-Free Variation: The recipe contains chopped nuts or seeds, but if anyone is allergic to nuts, then just leave them out. If the mixture seems a little soggy without nuts, then add some flour until it stiffens. This could be ordinary whole wheat flour or gram flour.
- Dairy-Free Variation: In the same way, cheese can be omitted if you want a dairy-free burger. We add cheese individually when eating risotto. But if you have already mixed cheese through your risotto, there is no need to add more cheese to this recipe.
- Gluten-Free Variation: If you need a gluten-free burger, use gram flour in place of the flour for coating the burgers.
- Vegan Variation (or if you are allergic to eggs): If you want a vegan burger, you can leave out the cheese and egg. But I would still recommend dipping the burger in flour, as this helps to keep its shape when cooking.