From the SCCC Kitchen: Black beans are boffo when making these healthy meatless burgers
“From the SCCC Kitchen” offers tastes from Schenectady County Community College’s culinary arts program. Today, educational aide Maggie Brousseau puts a different kind of hamburger over the heat. Her Black Bean Burger With Tart Mango Salsa offers an alternative taste for summer.
Nobody appreciates black hamburgers. It always means the chef has used too much fire.
Maggie Brousseau likes her black bean burgers. If she’s cooking this vegetarian dish, she’s using garlic, cilantro, onions and pepper sauce to jazz up the alternatives for toasted buns. Brousseau tops them off with tart mango salsa.
“They’re hard to grill because they don’t hold together like hamburgers do,” Brousseau said. “You can sauté them, put them on a flat top, a flat grill or a sauté pan and cook them that way. But they’re thoroughly cooked before you even warm them.”
The burgers can be made quickly. The beans can come from a can or chefs can use real beans — cooked down — for their main ingredient. Onions, peppers, a little jalapeño and a little garlic go into the mix, and patties are formed by hand.
The mango salsa, made with mango, tomatillos, peppers, spices and more garlic, is a nice cover for the bean patty. But if people are used to ketchup on hamburgers, they don’t have to break the habit.
“People put ketchup on their baked beans, why not on their black bean burgers?” Brousseau asked. “Cheese would work really nice. Anything you’d put on a burger, you can put on these.”
Black Bean Burger
1⁄2 medium yellow onion, roughly chopped
1 tablespoon chopped garlic
2 tablespoons freshly chopped cilantro leaves
2 cans (15 ounces each) black beans, rinsed and drained, divided
1 egg, whisked
1 dash hot pepper sauce ( more or less to taste)
Salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste
1⁄2 cup bread crumbs
Oil for pan frying (if not grilling)
Tart Mango Salsa
6 to 8 tomatillos, husked
2 tablespoons pineapple juice
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1 1⁄4 tablespoons lime juice
1⁄3 fresh jalapeño pepper, seeded
1 garlic clove, minced
5⁄8 teaspoon ground cumin
1⁄8 teaspoon dried oregano
1 ripe mango, peeled, pitted, diced
1⁄2 small red onion, minced
1⁄2 small green bell pepper, seeded and diced
1⁄2 small red bell pepper, seeded and diced
Salt and pepper, to taste
Chopped fresh cilantro, for garnish
For black bean burgers: Place the onion, garlic, cilantro leaves and just one can of black beans in a food processor and blend just until incorporated. Add the egg, seasonings and bread crumbs and blend into mix. Fold in the other can of black beans. Form burger patties. Place on a hot grill and cook until thoroughly heated (about 10 minutes). The patties can also be pan fried — cook until thoroughly heated.
For tart mango salsa: In a food processor or blender, purée the first eight ingredients. Place mango, onion and peppers in a serving bowl. Pour the purée over and stir to mix well. Chill at least 1 hour.