Monday, August 11, 2014

Southwest Black Bean Burgers

These Black Bean Burgers are so simple to make, and tasty. They freeze well, too, so that you can keep them on hand in the freezer for times when you want a quick meal.

You can either serve these with traditional burger toppings, or you can be inspired by the "Southwest" theme and top them with your favorite Southwestern ingredients, like Salsa or Guacamole.

Southwest Black Bean Burgers
Adapted from a book by Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn (I don't recall which book - but I highly recommend all his books!)
Pulse  in food processor till chopped up, but NOT until it becomes a smooth puree:*
 1 (15 oz) can black beans, drained in Sieve
OR 1 1/2 cups home cooked Black Beans
1 (15 oz) can Diced Tomatoes, drained in Sieve
1 cup chopped Carrots
1 cup cilantro (or a 1/2 bunch - the measurement doesn't need to be precise here)
1 Tablespoon Taco Seasoning
Stir in
2 1/2 cups Oats**
Form into patties
Cook on Nonstick Electric Grill (such as a George Foreman or Wolfgang Puck model) for about 10 minutes, till firm 
Bake 400 degrees on cookie sheet, 8 minutes, turn, bake 2 minutes more.
OR, cook in nonstick pan

Note: These can stick to a grill a little - especially if you try to open the grill before they're completely done. For best results, don't remove them from the grill, or open the grill before they're completely done - and you may wish to lightly oil the grill. If they do stick to the grill & fall apart, they can simply be pressed back into patty shape while cooking- and they will stick together again.

*My food processor is a small model (2-3 cups capacity) so I pulse these things in batches, then stir them together with a spoon.

** I use whatever sort of oats I have on hand. If I'm using Old Fashioned Oats, I put 1/2 cup of total amount of the the oats into the food processor and grind them to a powder - this helps the burgers stick together. If using quick oats, I just use the entire measurement as-is.

Freezer/Bulk cooking tip: These burgers may be made in advance & frozen for when you need them. They can be frozen either cooked, or raw! If you cook them before freezing them, wrap them in double layers of waxed paper (or your other favorite method to keep them from sticking together when frozen), then simply reheat briefly in microwave when you're ready to eat them. 

If you prefer to freeze them raw, wrap them in double layers of waxed paper (or your other favorite method to keep them from sticking together when frozen), and just pop them into your favorite electric indoor grill to cook - no need to thaw before cooking! : ) 

Tip for dining with Omnivores: Of course, traditional Hamburgers are great to serve to the Omnivore at your table, when the Vegans are eating these. 

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