Friday, 4 January 2013

mexican black bean burgers

One of my new year resolutions this year was to start cooking meals by looking at what we have to use up before heading to the shops to buy more things.  That is how these Mexican style "burgers" came about.  I felt like Mexican but we didn't have any premade tortillas and we were out of flour to make any. But we did have polenta, corn and left over brown rice
I think calling this Mexican is most likely a bit of a stretch. Really it is a smokey burger on some salty fried polenta with some fresh salsa to lighten it up. Don't be put off by the three parts, each part of the dish comes together very quickly. I went from staring in the fridge to sitting down to eat these in under an hour and the left overs made a delicious lunch the next day. 

2 cups cooked black beans
1 cup cooked brown rice
1/4 cup rolled oats
1 tsp smoked paprika 
2 cloves of garlic crushed
1 tsp salt
6 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp flax meal 

Polenta "buns"
1 cup fine polenta
2 cups water or milk of your choice (if using soy make sure it is unsweetened) 
1 tsp salt 
1/4 cup nutritional yeast (optional but delicious, will give a cheesy flavor) 

2 pieces of fresh corn
4 tomatoes diced
1 large avocado diced
handful of fresh coriander diced
handful of fresh parsley diced
2 spring onions diced
1 fresh lime


Start by making the polenta.  Oil a small tin and set to one side. Place the milk or water in a small saucepan on the stove and add the seasoning (except the nutritional yeast if using). Bring the milk to a gentle boil. Gradually pour in the polenta whisking constantly until mixture begins to thicken. Remove from heat, add nutritional yeast if using and pour straight into prepared tin. Set aside to cool. 

To make the salsa start by cutting the kernels off the corn and fry them gently in a little olive oil until they turn bright yellow. Combine the corn with the rest of the ingredients in a large bowl. Squeeze the juice of the lime over the salsa and season with salt and pepper. 

Place all the ingredients for the burgers in a food processor and combine until a rough dough has formed.  Roll into burger shapes. If you want you can bake the burgers instead of frying but be careful that they don't become too dry. 
If frying place in a hot pan and cook for about 2mins on each side. Place in a warm oven until ready to eat. 

Tip out the polenta mixture when cooled onto a chopping board and cut into your desired burger bun shapes. Heat a small frying pan with a little olive oil ad fry the polenta on each side until golden. 

To construct your "burger" place some polenta then a burger and top with salsa. Finish with extra lime juice and your favorite hot sauce. 


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