Black Bean Burgers

Black beans are rich in protein and fiber, and they contain a fair amount of iron. These burgers are delicious and satisfying and are vegan, too, which means they are free of all animal products and also cholesterol-free. Serve them on a potato bun or other bun, with a slice of fresh mango, or with the more traditional organic romaine leaves, sliced tomato, red onion, and ketchup. Either way, they are really good.

These burgers freeze well and are easy to cook from frozen. When ready to serve, bake them in a preheated 400°F oven for about 5 minutes until heated through. Just remember, they are fragile, so handle them gently.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups dry organic black beans, about 12 ounces, sorted for stones, rinsed
  • ¼ cup organic brown rice
  • 1 small organic red bell pepper, seeded and finely chopped
  • ½ small sweet onion, finely chopped
  • ¼ small organic jalapeño pepper, minced
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons organic bread crumbs
  • Sea salt and pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried organic oregano
  • 2 teaspoons organic chili powder

Method

  1. Measure 3 quarts of water into a heavy pot. Add the black beans and rice. Cover and bring to a boil over high heat. After the water reaches a boil, which takes about 5 minutes, reduce the heat to medium and cook at a medium boil for about 1 hour or until the beans are tender. (The time will vary depending to how old and dry the beans are.) When the beans are tender, drain them into a colander, then turn the drained beans into a bowl. Using a fork or a potato masher, mash the beans, not completely smooth, but leaving some beans partially whole. Add the remaining ingredients. Stir well to combine. Taste for seasonings.
  2. Center the oven rack. Preheat the oven to 425°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and spray it with olive oil spray, or just spray a baking sheet with the spray. Using a half-cup measure, pack some of the bean mixture into the cup, then tap it out onto one hand. Using your free hand, press lightly to form a burger about 4 inches in diameter. Carefully place the burger on the prepared baking sheet, then continue forming and placing the remaining burgers, leaving a little space between the burgers to make turning easier. Spray the tops of the burgers lightly with olive oil spray. Bake the burgers in the preheated oven for about 25-30 minutes until the tops are just firm to the touch. Using two metal spatulas, carefully turn the burgers and spray the tops lightly with olive oil spray. Bake for about 30 minutes, until just firm to the touch. Remove from the oven and set aside for about 10 minutes to allow the burgers to firm up enough for handling.

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