Sunday, February 21, 2010
Last week I worked on black bean burger recipes. I wanted something reliable and tasty, but was disappointed with the recipes I’d found and ended up taking a different route.
I wanted a burger where the black beans and vegetables themselves shined, instead of existing as bland bulk covered up with cumin and chili powder for flavor. After several fails, I roasted the vegetables with much better results than chopped up raw ones. It’s an extra step, but not a difficult one.
Homemade vegetable burgers are softer than store bought because of the lack of textured vegetable protein. Keeping that in mind, choose or make a soft bun so your burger doesn’t squish out the sides when you take a bite.
Roasted Vegetable Black Bean Burgers
1 bell pepper, any color
4 cloves garlic
½ cup frozen corn
Light olive oil
½ teaspoon salt
Fresh cracked pepper
Sprinkle of garlic powder
Sprinkle of onion powder
1 cup pulverized Keebler Club Crackers
2 (15 ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained well
2 teaspoons Tapatio Hot Sauce, or to taste
1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees and line a rimmed baking sheet with foil.
2. Slice the onion and bell pepper into wide strips and place on the foil. Add the garlic and corn. Drizzle with enough light olive oil to coat well and season with ½ teaspoon salt, lots of fresh cracked pepper, and a good sprinkle of garlic powder and onion powder. Toss to coat.
3. Bake vegetables for 35 to 40 minutes tossing twice while cooking for even browning. Vegetables are done when there are some black spots and the vegetables are soft. Let cool on the baking sheet until about room temperature if you have time.
4. In a food processor, pulverize enough Keebler Club Crackers to make one cup. Place in a large bowl. Then add the rinsed and drained black beans to the food processor and pulse quickly two or three times, don’t crush all the black beans, just about 2/3rds of them. Place them in the bowl with the crackers.
5. Place the roasted vegetables in the food processor and process until chopped into very small pieces. Add to the bowl and add the hot sauce. Mix everything together gently with a spoon and taste for seasoning. Important: Add more salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, and/or hot sauce to taste here.
6. Brush a nonstick skillet or preferably a cast iron griddle with oil and heat to medium. Scoop the mixture into patties and pat to shape as you cook. Cook each side until a nice crust forms.
7. Serve with soft buns and condiments of your choice.
Notes: If you have a bread machine it's super easy to make your own buns. Recipe from the picture is here.
Recipe and photograph by Laura Flowers.