Veggie Burgers and The Royal Tenenbaums
The holidaze are over(ish) and it’s time to think about resetting my body from the sugar-filled diet it’s been on these past few weeks. I mean, I love cinnamon rolls as much as anyone else, but I’m so over sugar in the morning that if I never saw another cinnamon roll ever again, I’d be okay with that. So, with health in mind, I present to you an argument for pursuing alternative forms of things.
Okay, hear me out here. (Wow, two homonyms in one sentence, Laura? You’re a nerd for pointing that out.) Veggie burgers are better than regular burgers and sometimes, reading the screenplay makes you appreciate a movie that much more. Yes, I just cringed in anticipation to your reaction to that sentence, in which I disguised a very non-palatable statement with a somewhat easier to digest one.
Let’s discuss. Burgers are burgers. Add bacon jam, throw some onions on, blah blah blah, at the end of the day, it’s all beef to me. Veggie burgers, on the other hand? There’s no shortage of combinations that’ll get you to an awesome burger substitute. Zucchini, black beans, sweet potato, quinoa, carrots, and all number of other things can get you there. And they also go well with bacon jam, onions, etc. Just trust me on this one and go make a batch of these zucchini-based veggie burgers.
While you’re making the burgers, sit down with the screenplay of your favorite movie and prepare to have your world rocked. (Unless your favorite movie is, like, The Room, or something. Then prepare to be struck dumb.) I did that this week with The Royal Tenenbaums, and it made me appreciate the movie and talent that went into making it so much more. When’s the last time a burger did that?
Leave the beef in 2018.
There’s not a lot I crave often, but burgers have always been one of those things. Veggie burgers, that is. Even before I went full on veg-head, these babies were the stuff of my late night cravings. This gem of a recipe is largely based off of one of the many on Tieghan’s blog Half Baked Harvest. She’s a goddess. I mixed in a little more spice and halved the recipe. FYI, there were still more than enough for the two of us.
Servings: 4-5 as a main course
Time: 45 minutes, including baking
3 zucchini or yellow squash (or a mix!), quartered into spears
1 large white onion, quartered
3 cloves of garlic, just peeled! Not crushed, not minced, not anything. Wow.
salt and pepper
1/2 tsp of red pepper flakes
1 tsp of smoked paprika
1 cup of cooked quinoa
1 cup of breadcrumbs (gluten free, if that’s your groove)
1 bunch of fresh dill
Preheat the oven to 425.
Throw the zucchini / squash, onion, and garlic onto a baking sheet and drizzle it with the olive oil, salt, pepper, red pepper flakes, and smoked paprika. There’s not a lot of precision here because we’re going to use our trusty food processor to help us out.
Bake that for about 20 minutes, flipping halfway through, then dump the entire contents of the sheet into your food processor. Hey, how handy! Oh, by the way, go lower your oven to 375. And don’t wash that baking sheet just yet.
Add the quinoa, breadcrumbs, and fresh dill, then give it all a whirl. Wheeeee.
By now, you should have a sort of moldable, squishy situation. Taste it. More salt? More pepper? If not, you’re good to go.
Grab that baking sheet that you used before, and, eyeballing it, divide your burger, er, dough into about eight equal portions. Shape the portions into patties, not unlike the ones you’re used to seeing, then place them on the baking sheet. Don’t let them touch, please. You’re just encouraging them.
Bake for about 15 minutes, turning over once about midway through.
Serve on a burger bun with all the toppings you like on your burger. For me, that’s pickled onion, arugula, fresh dill, and some sort of herby yogurt sauce.
The Royal Tenenbaums
Plot: An estranged father decides to rejoin his family by any means necessary, prompting an exploration of the fate that has befallen the rest of his clan.
Thoughts: WOW. I mean, I knew I loved the movie. And I knew Wes Anderson was a genius. And I knew I loved Owen Wilson for more than just his cheesy “wow!”s. But reading this screenplay deepened all of that love and even tossed in a little dash of respect on top of it.
Despite having taken screenwriting classes in college, I’ve never thought as hard about a screenplay as I did this one while I was reading it. It’s one of, if not the, perfect example of how the screenplay makes the movie. The timing, cuts, and pacing of the movie (which make it as great as it is!) are all here in the blueprints, and I had no idea. It’s honestly mind-blowing.
The characters are quirky and cute, the dialogue is smart and witty, and the plot is winning. Just do it.
Verdict: If you love the movie, reading the screenplay is a must. If you haven’t seen the movie, read this first, then RUN to your nearest place you watch movies and check this one out. Find the screenplay here and the movie here.
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