Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Black Soy Bean & Sweet Potato Veggie Burgers

Veggie burgers can be the comfort food of choice for vegetarians at a restaurant or diner. They can also be undercooked messes that fall apart, or bland patties straight from the freezer- as Forrest Gump would muse, you never really know what you're gonna get. And isn't that all the more reason to make your burgers yourself? Using canned organic black soy beans gives the burger some more substantiality than your average canned black beans, and sweet potatoes make these babies all the more flavorful and colorful! Don't you deserve a better burger?

The Whats:

* 2 tbsp. olive oil, plus more for frying veggie burgers
* 2 cans black soy beans, drained & rinsed
* 2 medium sweet potatoes
* 1 medium red onion, diced
* 4 garlic cloves, minced
* 1 tbsp. cumin
* 1 tbsp. sweet hungarian paprika
* 2 tsp. chopped cilantro leaves
* juice of 1/2 lime
* 1 tsp. crushed red pepper
* 1/2 cup to 3/4 cup whole wheat flour (you can also use spelt flour if you prefer!)
* salt & pepper to taste

The Hows:

1) Cut the sweet potato into large chunks. Place the sweet potatoes in a pot of boiling water, and allow potatoes to boil until completely cooked and soft. Remove skins from softened potatoes. Set aside.

2) Meanwhile, heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Reserve 1/4 cup onions and set aside. Add remaining onions & garlic and cook until browned, about 5 or 6 minutes. Add the black soy beans to the pan. Mix in paprika, cumin, cilantro, red pepper and lime; cook for about 5 to 8 minutes, or until soft. Remove from heat and allow several minutes for beans to cool.

3) In a large mixing bowl, combine the sweet potatoes and soy bean mix. Using a potato masher, mash beans and potatoes well. Add salt & pepper and adjust seasonings. Add whole wheat flour to mashed ingredients and mix- it should have a consistency of a thick cake batter, you can add more as necessary. Form bean & potato mix into 8 burger patties.

4) Heat about 1/4 cup olive oil in a large pan over medium heat. Place two or three burgers in the pan at a time, and allow each side to cook for 5 or 6 minutes, until brown and crisp. Set aside and repeat until all veggie burgers cooked.

Serve on whole wheat burger buns or pita and guacamole or chipotle salsa.

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