I was sent some whole grain rice and limited edition BBQ flavoured rice from the brand Tilda to try out and review. I have been wanting to make these mushroom and rice burgers for ages so I decided this would be the perfect recipe to try out with the Tilda brand. There isn’t a lot to compare with rice on first look so I decided to research a bit about the company and see what made them different. They started as a business selling basmati rice in the sixties to Asian communities who had immigrated to the UK and have grown internationally from there.
They have a ‘Fair price’ system with their farmers to ensure 1. their farmers loyalty does not falter and 2. the farmers are being paid correctly and generously. Taking this on face value as a fact I like this aspect of their business because it has become clear that live stock and produce farmers in the UK have slowly been beaten down on price by supermarkets and suppliers to the point that they have had to take short cuts with our food, such as cheap meat (and even illegal horsemeat), bad living conditions for animals, heavy pesticides and gmo crops etc.
Rice isn’t something we eat a lot of but I do always buy brown/ whole grain rice and I usually just buy supermarket own brand as it is cheaper and I didn’t think there would be much difference in the actual product. Tilda is a little more expensive than I normally buy at £2.49 for 500g however I did actually notice a difference in the quality and would be tempted to buy it in the future. The rice itself was smoother and more uniform and it cooked a lot quicker than the brown rice I usually buy. I also found that the grains separated nicely once cooked and didn’t become clogged together.
So, on to my burger recipe! I have been thinking about this recipe for ages so couldn’t wait to finally get around to cooking it! Most of my veggie burgers are bean based so I wasn’t sure what the texture of a rice burger would be like, or whether it would work at all, but it came out really nice with a smooth texture that still had some bite to it! The mushroom flavour is quite subtle but enough to add a nice earthy tone along with the parsley.
The first time I made these they completely fell apart so this time I blended half of the cooked rice before adding it to the other ingredients and this acted as a really great binder for the burger. Getting the right amount of flour is also important as this helps it to not fall apart, I usually say 1/2 tablespoon per 2 burgers is an accurate amount for quite a wet mixture (so if making 6 then use 1.5-2 tablespoons of flour).
Mushroom and Rice Burger
Makes 4 burgers
Vegan, Gluten Free, Dairy Free
150g Closed Cup or Chestnut Mushrooms (8-10 large mushrooms)
1 Garlic Clove
Small Bunch Parsley
1 tspn Dried Herbs (I used Oregano)
1 tspn Paprika
Pinch Chilli Flakes
Salt and Pepper
1-2 tablespoons Rice Flour (add 1 then if needed add more)
1 Cup Rice (cooked and cooled down)
Finely Chop the Mushrooms, onion, garlic and parsley stalks and fry in a non stick pan for approx 5-6 mins until softened. Grate the courgette and add it to the pan with the oregano, paprika, chilli flakes and seasoning and fry for a further 2-3 minutes then remove from the heat and pour it all into a big bowl.
Blend half of the cooked rice and then add that into the bowl with the remaining cooked rice, parsley leaves and flour. Mix everything together pressing it firmly with your hands to bind it together. Shape into 4 burgers, put on a plate and put in the fridge for at least an hour or over night.
I tried frying and grilling these burgers and both worked perfectly. To fry then place in a frying pan with a drizzle of oil and cook for 3 minutes on one side then flip and cook for 3-4 minutes on the other side. If grilling then place under the grill for around 4 minutes on each side.
As I mentioned Tilda also sent me a pouch of their limited edition BBQ rice which you can microwave in 2 minutes. This isn’t the sort of product I would ever buy because I worry about the ingredients they may have added or if there are preservatives and also it seems a bit lazy! BUT I can see how these can be great when you want to try different flavoured rice without having to buy different herbs and spices. Also it’s great for when you are having a big BBQ and want some quick sides to go along with all the other food.
I can’t eat anything ready made without putting my own twist on it so for this rice I have added some pineapple chunks and toasted cashew nuts. This would be a great way to jazz it up and make it look like you went to a lot of effort
The flavour of the rice surprised me as the first thing I noticed when I cooked it was the strong hit of cardamom that you get followed by a very fragrant sweet smell of the different spices. It’s delicious and very unusual, this rice was developed by Masterchef winner Dhruv Baker and you can tell he has been a bit creative with the flavourings. I also liked the look of the ingredients list which included rice, roasted onions, tomatoes, vegetable stock, maple syrup, chipotle, fennel, paprika, ginger, sugar and cardamom. It seems innocent enough! I’d recommend this product for the flavour and convenience but would also suggest having a go at making your own