September 23, 2012

Claire's Black Bean Burgers

I had been experimenting with different veggie burger recipes for a while but couldn't really find one that I liked.  They always turned out too dry, too mushy or would fall apart if you looked at them too hard.  For the August potluck, I tried using a METHOD rather than a recipe and had great results!  This method can be used with any combination of ingredients or spices and your burger will still turn out perfect (crispy on the outside and chewy on the inside and it won't fall apart when you bite into it).

Vegan Burger Method   
  • 1  pound of cooked beans (black, pinto, chickpeas etc.)
  • 1 cup dry base ingredient (oats, barley, breadcrumbs, cornmeal etc.)
  • 1/2 cup texture ingredient (chopped nuts, quinoa, avocado, leftover rice or oats, etc.)
  • 2 cups diced veggies (whatever you like the most!)
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1 clove garlic, minced 
  • 3 tablespoons oil for frying
  • 3 tablespoons liquid flavor (BBQ sauce, ketchup, mustard, horseradish, etc)
  • 4 teaspoons dry spice (spice mixes, nutritional yeast, dried herbs, curry powder, etc.)
  •  salt to taste 
This go around I used black beans, barley, leftover stir fried rice (veggies and all), carrots, beets, squash and some Stubb's BBQ sauce I received as a gift from Texas.

In a pan with a little oil, sauté the onion, garlic and chopped veggies until they are softened but not mushy.  Pulse the cooked veggies, beans, liquid flavor and texture ingredients in a food processor until combined (I used a blender and it took a bit more work, but it did the job).  Add the dry base ingredients and the dry spice into the processor and pulse until combined.  It should be slightly chunky but able to stick together easily.  Form into golf ball sized balls and allow to sit for 15 minutes.  This helps the dry ingredients absorb all the moisture and will help your burgers stay together after they are cooked.  

15 minutes later, flatten the burger balls into patties and fry over meduim high heat until they are crisyp on the outside.  Top with your favorite greens, sliced veggies, vegan cheese and spreads and dig in!  This menthod can be modified to make a variety of different burgers so play around and see what you can come up with.  I think Indian Burgers made with chickpeas, curry and lentils will be my next batch!   I adapted this method from a recipe on the No Meat Athlete blog.  You should check it out for great tips on being a vegan athlete!  
Photo by Claire Harris

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