This week’s recipe is a proper vegetarian staple: the bean burger. Really often when you have to go to a restaurant that is strongly meat-centred because someone is celebrating their birthday there, the only meat-free option on the menu will be some kind of “veggie” burger that will more often than not involve beans. Sometimes they are really good and sometimes they look, smell and taste like baby vomit. But guess what, when you make them yourself from scratch they are actually really delicious and also very nutritious.
Serves four if used as part of a bigger meal, if you want to eat only the naked burgers and nothing else it could serve two
-Chickpeas (1 can/400gr)
-Black beans (1 can/400gr)
-Garlic (couple of cloves, I use about 5-6)
-2 shallots or 1 really big red onion
-Salt & pepper, cumin, coriander, paprika, any other spices you like (I added some chipotle mix)
-1 egg or a vegan egg replacement like a flax egg (google it there are many guides to egg replacement options)
-Flour (small amount like a few spoonfuls)
-Breadcrumbs (I use ones mixed with seasoning from Albert Heijn called ‘paneermeel met kruiden’)
Crush/chop the garlic as fine as possible, chop the onion in as tiny bits as you can.
Drain the cans of beans and mash them. I have at times used a potato masher, but I have also thrown everything in a blender together before, both work but I quite like when there are still entire chunks of bean in there rather than it being a smooth paste and the potato masher technique will achieve that.
Put the mashed beans in a bowl and mix with the onion and garlic, and add in the salt & pepper + spices and the egg (or egg replacement) and mix it all together.
Start adding small amounts of flour and some breadcrumb. It’s really hard to say how much you need exactly but start with a spoonful or two and mix that in, you will almost certainly need more but you don’t want to overdo it. You want a consistency that is still a little sticky but you have to be able to make balls out of it with your hands.
Spread the breadcrumbs on a plate and roll the balls in it. Flatten them so they become burgers.
Now fry them in a frying pan in a bit of olive oil until they are brown. You could totally eat them then, but I like to put them in the oven for a little while to make them a little more solid and cook the onions a bit more.