Kumara and Chickpea Hash Burgers

, from Issue #64. February, 2016
Photography by Aaron McLean.
Kumara and Chickpea Hash Burgers

Don’t let the vegetarian burger be the poor cousin at the barbecue. Spices, lemon and the almost nutty flavour of the kumara combine with chickpeas to make a meal everyone will enjoy. 


400 grams purple-skinned kumara, peeled 
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 teaspoon cumin seeds 
1 teaspoon each ground coriander and smoked paprika
1 x 400 gram tin chickpeas, drained and rinsed
¼ cup packed coriander leaves, chopped
finely grated zest 1 lemon
sea salt and ground pepper

To assemble
4 hamburger buns, toasted or grilled
any of the following toppings: lettuce, avocado, grated raw beetroot or carrots, sprouts, tomato, feta, onion jam


Cut the kumara into rough 2cm pieces and cook in boiling salted water until tender. Drain well and tip into a large bowl then crush roughly with a fork.  

Heat the oil in a sauté pan and add the onion and garlic. Cover and cook until very tender, stirring occasionally. Stir in the spices and cook for 1 minute. 

Add to the kumara, scraping in all the spiced oil from the pan. 

Put the chickpeas in a shallow dish and crush well with a fork, picking out the skins that fall off. Add to the kumara, with the coriander and lemon zest and season well. 

Mix everything together until well combined but not totally smooth. I find clean hands are best for this. You want the mixture to have some texture. 

Form the mixture into 4 patties the same size as the buns. Cover and chill until ready to cook. The patties can be made 2 days ahead. 

To cook: Heat a barbecue flat plate to medium then oil lightly. Cook the patties until they have a good golden crust then turn and cook the other side. 

Spread the buns with mayonnaise then top with the patties.

Add the toppings of your choice and serve immediately. Makes 4