Saturday, September 12, 2009

Black Bean Burgers

Keeping on our healthy kick, I made black bean burgers the other night. I'll be honest, a burger without meat scares me a little. I wasn't sure if I could really pull this off and have it be tasty. The recipe I found on food network's website got great reviews, so I thought I would give it a try anyway.

It turned out pretty good. The burgers were a little dry, but I think that's because I wasn't getting the right consistency and got a little trigger happy when I was adding more bread crumbs. I'm not sure you could make these on the grill, because it took a little bit of time in the pan for them to reallt firm up. My first one split when I tried to flip it too early.

Black Bean Burgers
from Sandra Lee of Food Network

1/2 medium yellow onion, roughly chopped
1 tablespoon chopped garlic
2 (15-ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained, divided
2 tablespoons freshly chopped cilantro leaves
2 teaspoons freshly chopped parsley leaves
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/2 cup bread crumbs
I also one jalapeno pepper to my burgers. It spiced them up a little bit.
Salt and fresh ground black pepper
4 hamburger rolls- Sandra suggests using the leftovers for another recipe, which is why only 4 hamburger buns are called for. I got 8 burgers out of my recipe

Optional Toppings:
1 tomato, sliced
4 small Romaine lettuce leaves, or any other type you have on hand
1/4 cup ketchup


Heat a grill or grill pan over medium-low heat.

In a food processor, pulse onion and garlic until finely chopped. Add 1 can black beans, cilantro, parsley, egg, and red pepper flakes and pulse to combine.

Transfer mixture to a large mixing bowl, add the remaining can of black beans and the bread crumbs. Season with salt and pepper, to taste, and mix until well combined.

Reserve 1/3 of the black bean mixture for Round 2 Recipe. Divide remaining mixture into 4 portions and form into patties. Place on hot oiled grill over medium-low heat and cook about 6 minutes a side or until heated through. Toast hamburger buns on a grill. Place a burger on the bottom of each bun. Top with lettuce, tomato and ketchup. Cover the burgers with the top of the bun and serve.

These were much better than I was anticipating, having never had a black bean burger before. I thought they were going to be mushy and without real consistency, but they were very tasty. Of course, they didn't taste exactly like a real beef hamburger, but I think I could get used to this as an acceptable substitute were I to ever become a vegetarian.

On the first night, we used the suggested toppings above, but on the second night, we tried salsa instead of ketchup and it was much much better.

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