On Sunday we had my cousin and girlfriend over for dinner. When "the kids" come over I like to have a range of foods to serve, because I never know what sort of food my guests might enjoy. Sunday I served lamb with a veggie couscous.
It was a good thing I did, because my cousin's girlfriend had some dietary restrictions. So while she didn't partake in the lamb, she had multiple helpings of the couscous.
The couscous I made was Moroccan inspired, and filled with lots of vegetables and spices. Really, it served as an excellent meal on its own. Because when something is loaded with flavor, it doesn't need to have meat also. Like this black bean burger. Meat free, but you won't miss it. Black bean burgers can be tricky. They often end up mushy, or fall apart. The secret to this one is the combination of mashed and whole beans.
Like the couscous, bold spices make this a very-non boring dinner option. But if that's not enough, the creamy avocado and spicy cheese serve as the perfect complementary counterbalance.
Homemade Quick Black Bean Burgers (From Cooking Light)
1 can black beans, rinsed, drained, and divided
5 hamburger buns
3 Tbsp olive oil
1 tsp grated lime rind
3/4 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp chopped fresh oregano
1/4 tsp salt
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 large egg white, lightly beaten
1/4 cup mashed avocado
2 Tbsp salsa
1/2 tsp hot sauce
4 slices reduced-fat Monterrey Jack cheese with jalapeno pepper
4 slices red onion
16 spinach leaves
- Place 1/2 cup beans in a medium bowl; mash slightly with a potato masher.
- Tear 1 bun into large pieces and place in a food processor, pulse 4times or until crumbs measure 1 cup.
- Stir crumbs, 1 Tbsp oil, lime rind, chili powder, oregano, salt, garlic, egg white, and remaining beans into mashed beans.
- Preheat broiler. Divide bean mixture into 4 equal portions with moist hands, shaping each into a 3-inch round patty.
- Heat 2 Tbsp oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add patties to pan. Reduce heat to medium and cook 3 minutes or until bottoms are browned. Carefully turn patties over, cook 3 minutes or until bottoms are broned.
- While patties cook, arrange 4 buns, cut sides up, on a baking sheet. Broil 1 to 2 minutes or until toasted.
- Combine avocado, salsa, and, if desired, hot sauce in a small bowl.
- Spread 1 1/2 Tbsp avocado mixture on bottom half of each bun.
- Top each serving with 1 patty, 1 cheese slice, 1 onion slice, 4 spinach leaves, and bun top.