March 16, 2009

Whole Wheat Cocoa Bun Burgers With Chickpea Vegetable Patties

Cocoa in burger buns? Seems a little odd to you? Not to me, it doesn't. The thought of adding some chocolate flavour in buns without the sweetness and fat, seemed too good to pass up when I first saw them at Palachinka, Marija's beautiful blog. And when she describes these buns as "incredible", I have to agree.
They do really well (in my opinion) as burger buns also, if you're willing to take a chance and do a bit of "out of the box" thinking where burger buns are concerned.

I have made Marija's Whole Wheat Cocoa Buns a couple of times now. The last time I made them, I slightly tweaked (which is the one on this post) her recipe and I liked this version too. While she suggests trying the buns with dulche de leche, I thought this tweaked version would make good burger buns.

As for the patties, I just put together what I had on hand the particular day I made them as a snack for tea. Whenever I soak chickpeas, I always add a little more than I need. I cook them, then drain and freeze the extra chickpeas for later use so I almost always have some in the freezer.

I also froze the left over patties and used them with these buns to make vegetable burgers. Use whatever you would like inside your vegetable burgers. My burger has some lettuce (surprisingly, considering we don't really like lettuce but I had some I needed to use up), onion, tomato, sweet and sour mango chutney and cheese. This makes my vegetable burger reasonably strong in the "healthy" department too.

Whole Wheat Cocoa Buns (adapted version):


2 cups whole wheat flour

1 3/4 tsp active dry yeast

1 tbsp honey

1 1/2 tbsp dark cocoa powder

3/4 tsp red chilli powder

1 tbsp olive oil

1 tsp salt

2 tbsps milk

flax seeds for sprinkling


Dissolve the honey and yeast in 1/2 a cup of warm water and allow to prove.

Mix all the other ingredients, except the milk and flax seeds, in a bowl or food processor bowl. Add the yeast mixture and enough water to mix into a smooth and elastic dough. Shape the dough into a ball and place in an oiled bowl, coating the dough with the oil, and cover. Allow to rise till double in volume.

Gently deflate the dough and divide into 6 equal portions. Shape each portion of dough into a bun. Brush the buns with milk and sprinkle with flax seeds. Cover wit a towel and allow the buns to rise a bit, for about 20 minutes.

Bake at 190C for 35 minutes till the buns sound hollow when tapped. Since the cocoa would give the buns a brown colour, it would be a bit difficult to judge how brown the buns would have become.

Chickpea (Garbanzo Bean) and Vegetable Patties (Cutlets/ Kebabs):


1 medium onion, finely chopped

1/2 tsp ginger paste

1/2 tsp garlic paste

1/4 cup finely shredded cabbage

1/4 cup grated carrots

a small hanful of sweet corn (frozen)

1 big boiled potato

1 1/4 cups cooked chickpeas

1 tsp coriander powder

3/4 tsp cumin powder

1/4 tsp turmeric powder

1 tsp chilli powder (adjust to taste)

1 tsp garam masala

2 tbsp chopped coriander leaves

salt to taste

a little oil for pan frying the cutlets/ patties


Mash the cooked chickpeas and boiled potatoes very well, so no lumps remain. Keep aside.

Heat 1 1/2 tsp oil in a pan, and sauté the ginger and garlic pastes and the onion till it turns translucent and soft. Add the spice powders and 2 tbsp of water and continue cooking over low to medium heat, for a minute. Now add the cabbage, carrot and sweet corn and sauté for another minute, on high heat. Turn down the heat to medium and add the mashed chickpea-potato mixture and salt. Mix well, and finally add the chopped coriander leaves. Take off the heat, and make sure the kebab/ cutlet/ patty mixture is well mixed.

Once the mixture has cooled a bit, divide it into 8 equal portions and shape each into kebabs/ cutlets/ patties. If you feel the mixture is too crumbly and difficult to shape, you can add a tbsp of chickpea flour (and a tsp of water, if required) to the mixture and mix well. These kebabs/ cutlets/ patties will be slightly soft, but should not fall apart easily.

If you use a non-stick heavy pan, you just need to lightly grease the pan to cook the cutlets/ patties. Cook them 3 or 4 at a time, until golden brown and slightly crisp. Then turn them over and similarly cook them on the other side too.

You can also lightly brush the cutlets/ patties with oil and either grill or bake them. Use them in vegetable burgers and serve with oven baked potatoes (optional) for a filling meal. They can also be served as a side dish to a main meal.

If you make the kebabs/ cutlets/ patties slightly smaller, you can serve them as appetizers or a snack, with tomato ketchup or coriander-mint and sweet and sour tamarind chutneys.
This recipe makes 8 patties, approximately 2" each.


arundati said...

wow!! the burger looks great and healthy too with all the right stuff...the pics are fabulous aparna.....i especially love the last one with the patties...

Soma said...

The buns looks wonderful & i agree with you.. they look perfect with as a burger. I like those whole flaxseeds on the top. I do the same thing with my chana... all the time.. then they go as lunch patties. Fresh Clean photos.

Happy cook said...

Wow i love the buns first of all , they looks so so beautiful and so delicious.
Love the chicke pea burger too.
Wish i had this burger now.

Vani said...

Lovely clicks! the chunky patties look yum and the burger delicious!

Cham said...

Cocao Bun, I thought first sweet,very unique bun flavor!the burger and bun are delicous pair!

♥Rosie♥ said...

I really need to try these buns out anything with chocolate in I just can't resist - you know me *giggle* Your chick pea burger looks mighty yummy too - great clicks :0)

Chitra said...

wow,iam just drooling over here,fantastic clicks,nice recipe!!

Marija said...

Aparna, thank you! You have made them beautiful! I think I'll try your modification myself :)

Superchef said...

looks fabulous!! both the buns and the patties!!

Indhu said...

looks awesome :)
love the first picture - such a healthy burger...

Arundathi said...

very nice. the burgers look fantastic - moist and yummy! and cocoa in the buns is a great idea!! lovely color!

TBC said...

Cocoa buns! I love the idea.:)

Nags said...

The buns sooo good! Lovely patties too.

jayasree said...

Loved the flavors in the bun. Good presentation and great click.

Bharti said...

Cocoa buns? Very interesting. The whole combination sounds great.

A_and_N said...

I love the pic with the buns, Aparna. And I love burgers. So will surelyt bookmark this one.

Curry Leaf said...

Can I come over,please keep some for me -not just one.
Fabulous buns -surprising with cocoa .Love the recipe and your adaptation.
Also waiting for your quickbread recipe for bbd

Miri said...

That is the most interesting dishI have seen in a long time! Take a bow!! The buns look absolutely perfect and the combination of chickpea patties along with must have been delicious.

BTW, sorry, but I haven't had time to go into the editing screen and figure out how to increase the font, but I was thinking maybe that's the default font for this particular style sheet?

Raaga said...

I also always have soaked and cooked chickpeas in my freezer. :) Never know when they can come in handy. I have come chhole tikkis coming up on my blog too :)the buns and the patties look divine... :)

sra said...

Very, very out of the box. I've had chocolate and chilli together, so I know it's a good combination.

Madhumathi said...

The burger looks perfect!Great snaps..
I'm intrigued by the cocoa buns..

vidhas said...

Lovley burgers with chickpea patties. Everytime i used to keep chickpea in my hand.

Vaishali said...

A new and really interesting idea, Aparna. I would've never thought of cocoa in buns, but as you point out, the idea of chocolate without sugar is intriguing. Love the burger stacked with onions, tomatoes and the chickpea cutlet.

bee said...

cocoa and chickpeas? i'm in heaven. gorgeous brunch.

Ranjani said...

That looks unbelievably good! The buns look phenomenal and I love how you've put the chickpea pattie together with it! Makes for a phenomenal plate:)

Usha said...

Love the idea of chocolate in spiced bread, sounds intriguing !

Divya Vikram said...

I make similar patties. The buns sound as a perfect accompaniment. Are they sweet?

Pearlsofeast said...

Wow Aparna, what a mouthwatering recipe. I love the bun and chickpeas burger sounds delectable.

karuna said...

tht looks soooo goood. the buns look perfect. good job aparna

Sharmila said...

I may not be able to make the bun, but am definitely making the patties. Great looking snaps Aparna! :-)

PG said...

buns look perfect! and i love how the patties look, my mouth is seriusly watering. wondering why as I'm quite full. A wonderful burger.

Aparna said...

Yes, those burgers were pretty good, tastewise. And thanks for th comments about the pictures, too.

Give in to the temptation, Rosie.:)

You're most welcome, Sweatha. Just posted the quick bread too.

The small font is the default size for this template. I tried fiddling with the HTML/ CSS but couldn't figure out how to change it. :(

Exactly, Raaga.;)

I was in a heaven of sorts and very full, Bee.:)

No Divya, they aren't sweet at all. Just the opposite but with a nice flavour of cocoa and a faint spicy after taste.

Nice to see you back, Shibani.:)

The buns aren't difficult to make either, Sharmila. Give them a try.

:D, PG.

FoodyGuru (Srimathi) said...

After a long time I am really looking at blogs. AS usual u have some great recipes on your blog. I like the burger that you have posted. Will have to try it some time soon.

kahliyalogue said...

mmmmmmmm I just love these patties!Together with those lovely buns,I got myself a perfect meal to go..deliciously healthy too!

Lizzie said...

Mmhhh! Just made the chickpea burgers. They were super easy and so yummy! Even my non-vegetarian fiance thought they were absolutely delicious!

Aparna said...

Thanks, Mia. They do make a great meal.

Lizzie, I'm very happy to find they found favour.:)

Roha said...

Lovely buns sooo good! Lovely patties too.

am new here,would love to see you all my blog,would love have comments too.

Aparna S Mallya said...


Can you please tell me what cocoa powder you used for the recipe? I have Hershey's which is bitter and I also have Ghirardelli sweet cocoa powder. I'm assuming it's the second one, since you haven't mentioned sugar, and the honey is not too much either. Just wanted to clarify. I also happen to have Cadburys cocoa powder which I got from India.

Also, the yeast I have, has been in my fridge for abt 6 months now. Can I use it directly or should I bring it to room temperature?

The buns and the cutlets look super cool, btw!

Aparna said...

Aparna, I use unsweetend dark cocoa powder in most of my recipes where cocoa powder is required. I forget the brand, as I emptied it out into a jar.
You could Cadbury's or any unsweetened cocoa powder.

These buns are not meant to be sweet, just have a chocolate flavour.
And if they're being used for burgers, you don't want them sweet.

You need to bring your yeast to room temperature for it to work properly.
Check if it is active by proofing it. If it bubbles up well, its fine.

Aparna S Mallya said...

Thanks, Aparna. Planning to try this in a few days.