I have some soy experiments running at the moment. Soy milk and tofu production, with lots of help and advice from the fount of all knowledge and all round good mate Marion. We have undertaken many mass catering projects over the years.
Anyway……. a bi-product of skqueezing (oh, that was a typo but I rather like its onomatapoeic resonance so I will leave it there) soaked soya beans to extract the ‘milk’, is all the solids that remain. Called Okora. (The automatic spell check made Okora into Korea, but that wouldn’t be right at all!). There are a thousand and one recipes for how to use the okora on many Vegan websites. I will offer just one at this stage for fear of boring you.
I soaked and drained 250g soya beans and when I had pulped them and extracted the milk from the solids I had about 400g of solids remaining. These solids are highly nutritious and there is no way I was going to discard them. I had a little think and made something up. So this is the recipe for okora burgers.
Put your bean pulp in a bowl. Add one large onion that you have pulsed in the food processor, and grate in two cloves of garlic. Add one flat teaspoon of cayenne pepper, salt and black pepper, plus two flat teaspoons of ground cumin and half an average sized bunch (how on earth do you measure that I wonder?) of finely chopped fresh coriander. You could also add a tablespoon of unsweetened desiccated coconut if you wish. Mix it all together. It will look fairly dry if you have squeezed most of the fluid out beforehand. In non-vegan land, at this stage, I would probably add an egg. But in vegan land, I added a tablespoon of nutritional yeast flakes (adds an umami savouryness) and a good dash of dark soy sauce.
With clean wet hands, form into burger shapes and make sure they are not too thick. Best more like quarter-pounders than Big Macs’. Coat in coarse semolina. Now lay them on a baking tray lined with baking parchment and put them in the freezer for half an hour to firm up.
Shallow fry in a flavourless oil that you’ve heated in a shallow pan on a medium heat. They are a bit friable, but they are delicious, so I recommend that you don’t put too many in the pan at once so you can turn them carefully after five minutes without knocking the edges off the sides as you do so.
I have tried eating them straight away, but I think they are better frozen when cooled, then cooked in a hot oven for 20 minutes or so, on top of a couple of slices of tomato seasoned with salt, chopped rosemary and a little lemon zest.
Tonight we are having them with yellow potatoes, lots of dark green and a rich mushroom and onion gravy enhanced with Watkins mushroom ketchup, surely one of the best condiments ever invented?