I was in Amsterdam a while ago, and while exploring a bit, I saw a small and very colorful burger shop called Flower Burger. It was about dinner time, and if you’ve visited my blog before, you might already know how much I love burgers and how this story ends. Right, with a very full belly 🙂
No matter where I am, burgers are nearly always a safe bet. It’s hard to mess them up so much that I won’t eat them. And the one from Flower Burger was exceptionally good!
Flower Burgers are vegan, but this meat eater here didn’t mind one bit, because they don’t try to imitate meat with 1001 funky ingredients and then call it vegan beef. Their different patties are made with all kinds of veggies and legumes and taste absolutely delicious! Oh, and did I mention that the buns come in different colors?
Unfortunately, there’s no Flower Burger near me, but that green Jungle Burger was so delicious that I’m craving more. It’s a good thing that they have all the ingredients listed on their website, and I’m using that to build my own. I won’t/can’t call it copycat, plainly because I have only tasted a smidgeon of what they sell, and that’s already been a few months. I have no idea if sauce x tasted like mine, or if my pink bun got the exact hue, but those lists give definitely good inspiration. Except the cheese. Sorry, but I prefer the real thing!
To start my
vegan vegetarian burger party, I made some test buns: one fifth of a batch of dough per color. It was enough to get a feeling for how much of the colorants I needed for a full batch and how the taste of the dough is affected by it, because I didn’t have all the original ingredients at home and I’m already inspired to try some very different stuff that I have, like curry paste and achiote (that one should make a fantastic red!).
The dough was enough for two burger buns per color: one big one and one tiny one.
Just lievito madre, a bit of oil, salt, water, flour and freeze dried veggies. All the doughs started out very pale, but the color intensified during kneading time. I really like how they turned out so far, the green could use a bit more oomph though. I used tomato powder and smoked paprika (orange), turmeric (yellow), butterfly pea flowers (blue), butterfly pea flowers and turmeric (pale green) and beetroot (dark pink).
The color held overnight and during the last week in the freezer. The buns are a little bit denser and heavier than my za’atar buns, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Not every burger patty is supposed to be wrapped in a cloud of fluffiness. The slightly sturdier bread fits the future filling.
I based the recipe for the rainbow buns on my flatbreads, but used more oil and a slightly different water:flour ratio.
- 300g lievito madre
- 300g water
- 24g sunflower oil (or any other neutral tasting oil)
- 15g salt
- 300g all purpose flour
- 125g bread flour
- 1 heaped Tbsp plant based colorant (see above for suggestions)
Mix and knead the dough until it passes the windowpane test. Leave your dough to rise for about an hour before you shape your buns. It doesn’t need to double in size, just rest.
Divide your dough into 6-8 equal portions and shape your buns. The dough is super easy to handle, so you won’t need rings or a burger pan for stabilisation. Just plop them onto a cookie sheet.
Cover your buns with a damp towel over a rack (so it won’t touch the dough) and let them rise until doubled. Meanwhile, pre-heat your own to 220°C / 430F.
Brush the buns with water (no milk, no egg wash!) and sprinkle them with sesame seeds (white and black), nigella seeds, or poppyseeds once they’re all puffed up.
Bake with steam on the baking steel / pizza stone and turn the oven down to 190°C /375F once the buns are in. They need about 15 minutes. Watch that they don’t brown on top. To keep the colors bright and beautiful, they need to stay absolutely pale. If you use milk or an egg wash, you’ll end up with golden brown buns with colorful insides.
Let the buns cool on a rack and enjoy with whatever kind of patty you prefer.