Hi, I'm Kim

Hi, I’m Kim Christensen, M.Om., Dipl.OM, L.Ac. I’m a licensed acupuncturist, herbalist, and owner of Constellation Acupuncture & Healing Arts in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Back before going to school and becoming a healthcare practitioner, Affairs of Living was my creative outlet while healing from chronic health issues. These days, I'm in a new phase of life, and this website is no longer updated.

Want to stay up to date? Check out my new website www.constellationacu.com.

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Unless otherwise noted, all recipes on this blog are free of gluten, peanuts, soy, corn, tomatoes, potatoes, shellfish, cane sugar, oranges, and yeast. Most recipes are also free of egg, dairy, and tree nuts (if used, reliable substitutions will be provided for these when possible). Check out my recipe index for a full list of recipes by category. 

Entries in Recipes: Main Course (42)


French Tuna Macaroni Salad with Anchovy Mustard Dressing (gluten free)

My week of housesitting is over, and yesterday I returned home to my humble apartment. It felt good to be back in my own space, and I enjoyed unpacking, making lunch in my own kitchen, and watching a documentary in my own living room. I returned home from this housesitting experience with a TON of great culinary inspiration - they have a large collection of cookbooks, which are now prominently displayed, unlike before. Not surprisingly, I delved in, looking at all sorts of cookbooks. I was especially charmed by the array of Indian and French cookbooks, as well as The River Cafe cookbooks (AWESOME). While most of the recipes in all the cookbooks I looked at required modification, or were completely off limits to me, that didn't stop me from relishing in the beautiful ingredients, the amazing colors, and inspiring techniques. After reading The French Kitchen and the River Cafe Cookbook Green, I was left dreaming of French and Italian cuisine. Anchovies, capers, and oil cured olives, tarragon and fresh parsley, fresh seafood and roasted chicken, and an abundance of fresh market vegetables danced through my thoughts.

The French and Italians seriously know what's up.
So, drawing on that inspiration, I decided to put a spin on the classic tuna macaroni salad that I am made for a friend's birthday BBQ last night. Tuna macaroni salad is a Midwestern standby at every potluck, church dinner, or BBQ. As a child, I did not like that salad at all, and was so happy to have a good reason NOT to eat it when I was vegetarian. Once I started eating meat again, I still wouldn't touch this salad. What is it? The basic framework is tuna, macaroni, and bunch of mayonnaise. The rest of the ingredients vary, depending on the cook, but it has been known to contain everything from peas, celery, and chunks of cheese (usually Velveeta) to green pepper or pickles. As for the seasonings, it is usually limited to salt and pepper. In my experience, every version of this salad I'd ever had included WAY to much mayonnaise, not enough seasonings, and far too few vegetables, and was simply heavy, creamy yuckiness. Blech.

I went for the opposite. My version is inspired by the flavors of French cooking, and is bright and sunny and light. Like its classic cousin, macaroni elbows (gluten free!) and canned tuna provide a base. But I embellished with crunchy slices of celery hearts, sweet pops of peas, and salty twangs of oil cured black olives and capers. Fresh parsley, tarragon, and dill from my garden add a fresh, green flavor, and I finished it off with a wickedly good anchovy and mustard dressing. The best part? The macaroni is totally outnumbered by the tuna and the green, green, green of veggies and herbs, and it doesn't leave you feeling heavy at all.
Seriously, canned tuna and elbow macaroni never had it so good. The salad was a hit at the party, and I took home *zero* leftovers. Nobody missed the mayonnaise or the gluten - I love feeding delicious, whole foods, gluten free things to unsuspecting people! Thankfully, I saved a little here at home for myself before taking it to the party - it will make for a great lunch next week.

Two things:
This recipe makes a large amount, about 3 quarts. So unless you are feeding a crowd , taking it to a potluck, or want some serious leftovers, I recommend halving the recipe. But then again, maybe not - it is really good, and you might just want to eat the whole batch!

This is not low sodium by any means - the anchovies, capers, olives, and fish sauce all have a significant amount of sodium. To reduce the amount of sodium, you can also use water or vinegar packed capers instead of salt packed; the flavor will be slightly different, but it will reduce the sodium. You can also omit the fish sauce if desired. Look for unsalted tuna, and rinse off the anchovies before using them in the dressing. I like going to Trader Joe's for both tuna and anchovies - their tuna is packed in just water or olive oil (no soy-based vegetable broth or other additives!), and their olive oil packed anchovies are really great too. And because it is Trader Joe's, you can get them for a great price! I used water packed tuna in this recipe, but olive oil packed would also be delicious. Oil packed tuna is richer and heavier, while water packed tuna is flakier and light - follow your personal preference.

yield: about 3 quarts

1 1/2 c dry (about 3 c cooked) brown rice elbow macaroni (or other tolerated pasta)
3 6-oz. cans water or olive oil packed tuna, drained
2 large shallots, thinly sliced
stalks from 1 celery heart, thinly sliced at diagonal (use 6-8 of the the inner tender stalks from a bunch of celery)
1 16 oz bag frozen peas, thawed
1/2 c oil-cured black olives, pitted
1/4 cup salt-packed capers
1/2 bunch parsley, chopped
2-4 T fresh dill, minced
2 T fresh tarragon leaves, minced, or 2 tsp dry tarragon

Anchovy Mustard Dressing
1 tin olive oil-packed anchovies, rinsed
2 T prepared mustard
2 T raw apple cider vinegar (Bragg's or Eden Organics)
1/4 t vitamin C crystals dissolved in 2-4 T water OR juice from 1/2-1 lemon
1-2 T fresh dill weed
1/2-1 tsp fish sauce (optional)
1 clove garlic (optional)
2-4 T olive oil

Prepare dressing: rinse the anchovies, then put all the ingredients except the olive oil in a blender, and blend until totally liquified. Gradually add the oil, and blend until emulsified and well combined; adjust seasonings to taste as desired. It should fairly thick, but still pourable; only add more oil or water as needed. Put in a small jar in the fridge until ready to use.

Prepare pasta: Next, prepare the pasta according to the instructions on the packaging. Cook only until just al dente, then strain and rinse well under cool water. DO NOT OVER COOK! After rinsing, put in a large bowl to cool, drizzle with just a little olive oil, and stir around to coat. Your pasta won't stick together as it cools this way!

Prepare the rest of the ingredients: Thinly slice shallots. Heat a small amount of olive oil in a small pan, and saute over medium heat until caramelly and brown. Add to bowl with pasta. Wash and thinly slice celery on a diagonal, pit and coarsely chop the olives, drain and break up tuna into small pieces, and measure peas and capers. Add everything to the bowl with pasta and shallots. Mince tarragon and dill, and also add to bowl. Toss ingredients gently a few times to mix, then pour on dressing and gently stir ingredients together until evenly moistened and mixed.
Transfer to serving bowl, cover, and chill for 1-2 hours to let flavors meld.
Serve and enjoy!


Old-Fashioned Food: Liver and Onions (gluten free)


Back when I was a vegetarian - a die hard, dedicated, well-balanced vegetarian, may I add - I would have never, ever thought that I would prepare the meal I ate tonight for dinner.  I can not stress that enough.  My former self would be horrified at my current self.  

My current self, however, looks back with respect.  In fact, sometimes, I wish I still were vegetarian.  Living a meat free life, in theory, is so much more in line with my general philosophy of non-violence and respect for all living things. I enjoyed living low on the food chain.    I don't like American meat-centric culture and the grossly huge portion sizes.  From a culinary point of view, cooking meat is way more complicated than cooking vegetables.  You have to worry about bacteria and food poisoning.  And if you are a responsible meat eater, you have to do your homework.  Why?  You don't want meat from an animal that has been treated with antibiotics or hormones or raised in cramped conditions eating unnatural feed.  The commercial cattle industry feeds cattle corn, which is silly - ruminants shouldn't eat corn, they should eat grass.  This topic leads into a discussion of the horrible use of land by the commercial cattle industry.  The amount of farmland dedicated to growing corn and soy for animal feed is staggering.  This land is slowly being stripped, because these commercial crops aren't being properly rotated.  That land could go to growing food for people, rotated with using it for grazing cattle.  But instead is going to grow food (corn and soy) for animals (cattle) that shouldn't eat that type food anyway.  I could go on about commercial food production forever.  But I won't.  There are lots of books, films, and studies out there from authors and filmmakers and scientists who are far more educated about this topic than I.  So, moving on.
Why don't I eat vegetarian anymore?  Because despite my fairly well-balanced, 10 year vegetarian lifestyle, I was unhealthy.  I was overweight. I had terrible acne.  I had really bad atopic dermatitis.  I had a hard time building muscle, despite going to the gym and leading a really active lifestyle (training for and completing a triathlon!).  I had a really hard time lostig weight.  My digestion was a disaster.  Then, back in 2006, I got sick for about 3 months and just couldn't get better.  I was doing everything right - I worked out, I ate a ton of fruits and vegetables, didn't drink a lot of alcohol, and had a whole bunch of natural remedies I'd employ for all sorts of things.  But nothing worked.  I got antibiotics from the doctor, and still couldn't get better.  They tested me for anemia, and it turned out I was, in fact anemic.  After some soul searching, I took the plunge.  I started eating meat, influenced by my own intuition and reading Dr. Peter D'adamo's Eat Right for Your Type.    He recommends O blood types eat meat, and avoid vegetarian diets.  While I don't buy into D'adamo's recommendations 100%, from my experience and the experiences of many others who have read and followed this book, I think there is definitely something to his overall philosophy.  
Eating meat again was the best thing I could have done.  I gradually introduced the meat, and found my body handled it like a champ.  And darn if I didn't get better real fast.  Seriously, the 3 month period of illness ended within weeks. I was shocked.  The anemia went away.  I felt stronger.  I was able to build muscle.  I started losing weight, without changing anything else about my life.  My energy went through the roof.  So, I completed another triathlon, and then a 300 mile bike ride around Minnesota.  
What does this have to do with liver?
It doesn't just have to do with liver, or even just with meat.  It has to do with the universally accepted notion that vegetarianism is a "healthier" life choice than living as an omnivore.  I don't agree with this notion.  In my opinion, your diet needs to be an individual choice. Just like some of us can't eat gluten and others can eat all the gluten they want, some people do well eating meat, while others just plain don't.  In fact, some people thrive eating meat, while the next person finds they feel totally disgusting eating it.  You need to make the decision that is best for you.  And when you find the diet that works for you, do your best to eat as consciously as you can within that diet.  
If you choose the life of an omnivore, choose quality meats and seafood, and be moderate with your portions.  Don't make it the focus of your diet; just because you eat meat doesn't mean you should sit down to meat, meat, and more meat.  Try thinking of yourself like a meat-eating vegetarian, and shift the focus of your meals to vegetables, legumes, whole grains, fruits, with meat and other animal products on the side.  And by choosing meats from producers that raise hormone-free, anti-biotic free, organic meats you are supporting responsible, sustainable agriculture.  
If you choose to be a vegetarian or a vegan, or choose to live raw, or choose a fruitarian lifestyle, or liquitarian, or whatever, the same thing applies.  Choose whole foods that are organic and responsible, focussing on whole, unprocessed foods as much as possible. I think a lot of vegetarians - my former vegetarian self included - get hung up on vegetarian convenience food.  Heck, it is possible to be a pretty junky vegetarian, living on processed veggie burgers, protein bars, microwaveable meals, canned soup, packaged rice mixes, and fancy snack chips and crackers.  While they might be meat free, and might even be organic, they are still highly processed food items that have been stripped of their nutrients and take up lots of resources in the production, packaging, and shipping processes.  Truthfully, I am of the belief that making choosing a responsibly raised cut of meat, especially from a local farmer, is a more sustainable choice than purchasing a processed vegetarian "burger" anytime.  
 I've been on a Weston A. Price Foundation kick the last couple months, delving into Sally Fallon's Nourishing Traditions and her collaboration with Dr. Thomas Cowan on the The Fourfold Path to Healing, and learning about about the benefits of old-fashioned, traditional foods and preparation methods.  Bragging about the benefits of raw dairy products, butter, cod liver oil, coconut oil, meats, and lots of cultured foods this is the exact opposite dietary philosphy of the book I was toting around last summer, Healing with Whole Foods by Paul Pitchford.  He suggests a nearly fat free, vegan diet centered around a lot of macrobiotic principals and traditional Chinese dietary therapy.  While these books differ in a lot of things, they share the philosphy that ultimately, a diet should based around vegetables and include lots and lots of cultured foods.  I passionately love both books, and see a time and a place for the information in both. 
Anyway, back to the subject of this post: liver.  On that note, I've been reading a lot about organ meats and the incredible nutrition they boast.  Liver is chock full of vitamin A, iron, and essential fatty acids.  In fact, organ meets are a particularly high source of DHA, EPA, and AA, which are all required by the body, but are often only acquired from food sources.  The World's Healthiest Foods website has a great write up about liver, check it out.  So, when I was at the co-op, and saw that the responsibly raised beef liver was only  $1.99/lb (what?!?!?!!??!?), I had to try it.  I got a just under a half pound of liver for $.92.  You can't get a can of decent tuna for $.92.  Hell, you can't get an organic nectarine for $.92.  Did you know that 4 oz of raw liver has a whopping 22 grams of protein?  Based on what I payed, this protein was about $.025 per gram.  That is the most nutritionally dense $.025 I have ever seen.
I cooked it up old school, using a recipe from Sally's Nourishing Traditions, a.k.a.. my favorite cookbook.  And damn, this liver was good.  Seriously.  It was delicious.  Although, in my opinion, if you cook up just about anything with butter and loads of onions and it would be delicious.   As I sat down to my tasty liver and onions, I gave thanks to the animal that died to give me the nutrition.   Sure, sometimes I wish I were vegetarian.  I really wish I could  be happy and healthy eating nice little salads and tempeh and all sorts of nuts and seeds and sprouted grains.  But it wouldn't be healthy for me.  I do better with some animal protein in the mix.  My skin is softer and smoother, my hair is healthier, my muscle tone is much better, and I have more energy.  And besides, it turns out I'm allergic to many of those delicious vegetarian protein sources (soy, eggs, most nuts).  God, how I miss tempeh, you have no idea (or, maybe you do).  In fact, I would almost kill for a tempeh, avocado, sprout, and tomato sandwich on the amazing sprouted wheat berry bread I used to buy.  With the exception of the sprouts, I'm allergic to all that stuff (seriously).  Sad.  Sure, I could try surviving on beans, cashews, sunflower and hemp seeds, goat and sheep yogurt, and the protein from whole grains, but it wouldn't be worth it to me.  I just don't think it is what my body needs.  
The lesson?  Make the dietary choice that is right for you; listen to your body and make responsible choices.  As time passes, your body and nutritional needs might change, and you need to honor those changes by making the appropriate dietary adjustments.  For me right now, it means eating a modest serving of meat most days of the week.  For you, it may mean something else.  Bottom line: find the foods that nourish you, and have the strength to nourish others.

LIVER AND ONIONS (gluten free)

adapted from Sally Fallon's Nourishing Traditions
serves 2
1/2 pound sliced liver (sliced in 1/4-inch to 3/8 inch slices)
1/3 c gluten free flour of choice
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp pepper
2 T butter or ghee
2 cups onions
1 T olive oil
  1. Rinse liver and pat dry.  Dredge in a mixture of flour, salt, and pepper.
  2. In a heavy skillet over high flame, saute the slices in butter, flipping as necessary.  Cook for about 5-10 minutes, until liver is just cooked through.  
  3. Meanwhile, in a separate pan, heat olive oil, and saute onions until carmelized and soft.
  4. If liver finishes cooking before onions are done, keep warm on a platter in the oven.
  5. Serve liver hot covered with onions.  I recommend eating it with a side of tasty sauerkraut.  Yum!



Dad's Top Five Grilling Tips and Mesquite-Smoked Grilled Chicken Breasts (gluten free)

This is a great guest post from my grill-loving father! He's a master at the grill, and whenever I go home I eat more meat than I normally eat in a week.  The man knows his way around a piece of meat, I'll say that much. Here's his tricks for grilling good chicken breasts.

Hi from Kim's dad.  Grilling is one of my favorite things and I grill just about anything.  A few years ago I purchased a combination grill and smoker--it was one of the best things I have ever bought.  I particularly like the sweet smoky taste light meats like pork and chicken take on when cooked in the smoker.   You don't need smoker, a normal gas or charcoal grill will work just fine.  The process is simple, but the results are wonderful.

  • Pay attention to the food you are cooking.  
  • You don't want to incinerate the food.  So watch your temperature.
  • Spices, rubs, and marinades are best applied a few hours before grilling.  So  plan ahead. 
  • Don't be afraid to experiment with different wood chips depending on the food you are cooking - I use hickory, mesquite, and apple.
  • Clean your grill.  Every time.
(Note from Kim: These tasty little chicken breasts were part of the Pre-Memorial Day Party backyard family get together.  And my dad is an awesome griller/smoker!  He's spoiled me for all grilled and smoked foods from anywhere else.  And his smoked salmon will bring you to your knees.  Anyway, the mesquite chip-smoking adds an amazing flavor to everything.  Hickory chips are also really good - he made hickory smoked hamburgers the night I arrived.  I scarfed them down.)

Update 6/15/10: This post is now linked to Friday Foodie Fix at The W.H.O.L.E. Gang.  The theme this week is Dad's Favorite in honor of Father's Day, so I thought this was the perfect submission!

Dad's Mesquite-Smoked Grilled Chicken Breasts

mesquite chips (mix of small and medium size)
chicken breasts
seasoning of choice (herbs, spices, etc) - a little mesquite flour rubbed on is REALLY good!
BBQ sauce if desired
About an hour or two before grilling soak a small hand full of mesquite chips in water.  I like to use smaller chips with a couple of medium size pieces.

Clean and trim the chicken breasts and pat dry.  Season the breasts with your choice of spices.  I have a personal spice blend that includes garlic, chili powder, cumin, some salt, black pepper, cayenne, dry mustard, oregano, and paprika. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator.  Allow the chicken to "marinate" for at least two hours.
Soaking up the seasoning, yum yum yum.
When you are ready to grill drain the wood chips. Place the chips in an aluminum foil "pouch" and poke a couple of small holes in the pouch. Place the chips in the grill when the breasts go on to cook.  I have found a temperature of about 400º F works well and doesn't burn up the chips too quickly.  Turn the breasts during cooking to allow for even smoking.  Cook until juices are clear.  If you want to brush with barbeque sauce do so during the last minutes of cooking.  Serve!

Mung Dal with Carrots and Summer Squash, slow-cooker style (gluten free, vegan)

You know, you just can't go wrong whenver big, tender chunks of carrot and summer squash swim in a base of velvety smooth, wonderfully spiced mung beans.  

Yes, I love mung beans, I love carrots and summer squash, I love Indian spices.  I love this dal.  So I'm sharing it with you.  I love it even more because it was made in the slow cooker and required very little effort.  Hooray!  This is another delightful, Ayurvedic dish adapted from The Ayurvedic Cookbook.  I made some adjustments, which are recorded below, along with the original recipe additions.  I also adapted it for a slow cooker.  

are great way to get protein in your diet, and are easy to digest and easy to make.  They are delicious served over rice or other cooked grains, or with flatbreads.  I also like to eat them plain, like soup.  This dal has the benefit of being tridoshic, meaning it is appropriate for all Ayurvedic constitutions, with the properly selected condiments.  According to the cookbook, the addition of something sour/acidic (like lemon juice) in the early phase of cooking dals helps to stimulate digestive fire.  Since I can't eat citrus, I fell back on vitamin C crystals dissolved in water.  Another option is amchoor, a dried mango powder.  In some areas of India, tamarind is also used.  Use whatever option works best for you!  
If you are interested in learning more about Ayurveda, and want to check out a great blog, visit Fran's House of Ayurveda.  She has lots of great information and recipes!
This is very tasty served with a side of Kohlrabi Mung Bean Sprout Salad, just as a suggestion...


adapted from The Ayurvedic Cookbook by Amadea Morningstar and U. Desai
yield: serves 8

2 c split mung beans
1 3" piece kombu seaweed (optional)
2 c carrots, peeled and sliced in 1/2 inch slices
4 c summer squash, sliced in 1/2 inch slices
2-4 T sunflower oil
2 1/2 tsp turmeric
1/4 tsp hing (I did not include - hing is not gluten-free)
1 T brown mustard seeds
2 T cumin seeds
1/2 tsp vitamin C crystals dissolved in 2 T water (or 2 T lemon or lime juice or 1 T amchoor dried mango powder)
8 c water
2 tsp salt
2 T cumin seeds
1 T mustard seeds
in original recipe (I did not include): 1/2 T fresh ginger root, minced and 1 small hot green pepper, chopped finely
optional garnishes: cilantro, chopped unsweetened coconut, sliced scallion, diced chili

Soak mung beans 4-6 hours.  Drain and rinse.
Prepare carrots and summer squash, and set aside. Dissolve vitamin C crystals in water or squeeze lemons/limes. 
In a large fry pan, heat oil, and add turmeric, hing, and vitamin C water/lemon/lime/amchoor, and saute for 30 seconds, being careful not to burn the turmeric. Add beans, stir, and saute for a few minutes. Add carrots and squash, stir, and saute for a few more minutes.  Remove from heat.
Place kombu in the bottom of the crock pot, and add bean mixture and 8 cups water, as well as ginger and hot pepper (if using). Cook on high for 4-6 hours, or until beans are completely soft.  
In a fry pan, heat oil, then add mustard seeds and cumin seeds. Stir to coat with oil, and heat until mustard seeds pop.  Add to soup with salt, and stir to mix evenly.  Soup is now ready to serve!  Serve with optional garnishes if desired.



Lentil Rutabaga Burgers (gluten free, vegan)

Last night I was inspired by a banged up rutabaga and some leftover lentils.
You don't often find the word "inspired" paired with "rutabaga", or "leftovers", for that matter.  But welcome to my world.  A world where inspiration comes in the form in homely root vegetables and old food.  A world where magic can happen with the unexpected.  And why not?  The promise of something great can come in all forms, you just need to be open to the possibility.
And when I bit into my Lentil Rutabaga burger, I was sure glad I'm open as window on a summer's day. Because these little burgers are good.  They make those leftover lentils WAY more enticing; paired with roasted rutabaga and plenty of herbs and spices, they took on a whole new life.  I wish I woudl have gotten a photo of the inside - bright yellow, studded with black beluga lentils, and bits of green herbs and scallions. Beautiful! This recipe would be a great way to use up leftovers of the legume or vegetable variety - I'd think you could use any leftover bean or starchy root vegetable.  If you're cooking your veggie up fresh, you could also steam it - while roasting gives a nutty, sweet flavor that adds a whole lot to the burger, steaming is a lower sugar option that may fit your dietary needs a little better if you are very very strictly counting sugar intake. 
To stick everything together and create a nice, crisp crust, I employed the hardworking, ever loyal quinoa flakes.  I don't know what I would do without them - I use them for breakfast porridge, in baked goods, to thicken soups and stews, in burgers, patties and loaves, as breading on fish, and the list goes on.  Quinoa flakes are full of all the same great nutrition as the whole quinoa grain - just quicker cooking and a little processed.  I think they should be a staple in everyone's pantry, not just us GF folks!  
Flavorful and full of good protein, fiber, and complex carbs, these burgers are a hit.  They remind me a little of felafel (which I have an amazing recipe for, by the way).  I chose to bake them for a lighter, lower fat option, but they could also be fried in a pan if you prefer. Serve over greens, stuffed inside a collard leaf, sandwiched inside GF breads, or eat alone with your favorite spread, sauce, or chutney.  I them twice today.  Once at breakfast in a sandwich, on a a slice of Coconut Flatbread with some experimental coconut milk-agar agar "cheese".  The flavors go really well with coconut, and it made for a very tasty, hearty breakfast.  Then at lunch, I ate a couple patties served up with sauerkraut, a smear of azuki miso, and some braised broccoli rabe.  Yum!  They are also very tasty eaten cold - I couldn't help but try a bite before heating it up. 
I think sometime I will try making them smaller, fry them instead of bake them, and serve them on toothpicks at a party with some tasty dips.  I'm going to try freezing a couple and see how they hold up after being thawed...I'm thinking they are best fresh, but it is worth a try!

LENTIL RUTABAGA BURGERS (gluten free, vegan)
yield: 6 burgers

1 c rutabaga, diced, roasted, and lightly mashed (about 1 medium rutabaga - could substitute other root vegetable like sweet potato, parsnip, carrot, turnip, celeriac, or beet)

3/4 c cooked lentils (or other beans)
1/2 c quinoa flakes + 1/4 c quinoa flakes for dusting
1 c water
2 scallions, finely sliced
2 T quinoa flour or other GF flour
2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp dry mustard
1/4 tsp turmeric
1 t smoked paprika (I didn't add this, but I would if I could - it would be very tasty!!!)
1/2 T dry cilantro
1/4 c fresh parsley, minced
ume vinegar or salt to taste
  1. Peel, dice and roast rutabaga with a little olive oil at 400* until completely soft, about 45-55 minutes.
  2. While rutabaga is roasting, slice scallions and mince parsley.  Measure herbs and spices, and mix together in a small bowl.  
  3. Remove rutabaga from oven once roasted (leave oven on), and mash slightly with a fork, potato masher, or ricer in a large bowl.
  4. In microwave or in small saucepan, heat 1/2 c quinoa flakes and 1 c water until very thick and soft.
  5. Add cooked quinoa flakes and cooked lentils to mashed rutabaga, and mix.  Then add scallion, parsley, spices, quinoa flour, and ume/salt, and stir until well combined.  It will be a thick, pasty dough.
  6. Place 1/3 c quinoa flakes onto a plate.  Divide rutabaga mixture into 6 portions, and form each portion into a patty between your palms.  Dredge the patty in quinoa flakes, and place on a baking sheet.  Repeat with remaining rutabaga mixture until all patties are formed, using more quinoa flakes if necessary.
  7. Bake at 400* until crisp and golden, about 40-45 minutes, flipping burgers halfway through. 
  8. Remove from oven, and let cool slightly before serving.  
NOTE:  If you prefer to fry the patties instead of bake them, heat a high temperature cooking oil (sunflower, safflower, or coconut) until sizzling.  Place coated patties in pan, and fry until golden brown and crisp, flipping as needed.  Remove, and drain on a paper towel.  Depending on the size of your patties/pan, you may need to fry in batches.


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