The Ever So Relished – Black Bean Burgers

Welcome back for something meatless and satisfying. I enjoy mixing in meatless options when I’m trying to reset after the holidays or a weekend of indulgence. This particular recipe does not disappoint on flavor, thanks to some healthy and delicious ingredients.

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Serves: 6

Black Bean Burgers Ingredients:

  • 2 (15 oz) black bean cans, rinsed & dried
  • 2 large eggs
  • 5 Tbsp olive oil (~ ⅓ cup)
  • 2-3 Tbsp Tannenbaum’s Blueberry, Sumac & Cinnamon
  • 1 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 red bell pepper, finely chopped
  • 6 Brioche Buns

Relish Ingredients:

  • 2 cup fresh pineapple, diced
  • 1 cup fresh red pepper, diced
  • 2 Tbsp of cilantro OR parsley
  • Juice of (1) lime
  • Salt to taste

Starting with the canned beans, place contents into a strainer or colander and rinse under cold water. Once the water is clear, drain and place in a clean kitchen towel to absorb as much moisture as possible. You can skip the drying step, if you please, but you may run the risk of mushy burgers.

Once you are satisfied with the state of your black beans, place 2 ½ cups into a medium sized bowl. Reserve remaining beans for later use. Use a potato masher to break down the beans. I was surprised to see that there wasn’t a more sophisticated name for this tool, but hey, it does indeed perform as advertised. Using the potato masher, mash the beans until the consistency is somewhat smooth (it’s perfectly fine to have some beans not completely mashed). Don’t over mash the beans as texture is a desired effect for this recipe. We are aiming for moist to the touch but not sticky when forming our patties.

In a separate medium sized bowl, whisk eggs and then add in (1) Tbsp of olive oil, Tannenbaum’s Blueberry, Sumac & Cinnamon, cumin and salt. Stirring ingredients together, add in the reserved beans, panko and red bell pepper. Take the well blended mixture and add to the mashed beans, stirring to form an even consistency.

Either using gloves or dry clean hands, take the mixture and divide into 6 evenly sized mounds. Roll the mixture into a ball shape and repeat with all 6 mounds. Next, take the balls and slowly apply your open palm and push down on the balls to form a patty. You may shape the patty as you see fit but it would be ideal to aim for 1-inch thick patties for even cooking time and temperatures. If you would like to achieve easier handling for when it comes time to cook, place patties in the freezer for 10 minutes before cooking.

While the patties sit in the freezer briefly, this would be an excellent time to whip up a delightful relish for the burgers. The relish we are creating today does not contain any added sugars and it’s very simple and clean. Take out your fresh pineapple, remove top and coarse outer layers with a sharp knife on a cutting board. Slice pineapple at the width (not top to bottom) and remove the core, generating rings. Note: many grocery stores sell pineapple in “chunks” and this could really save on time and labor. Dice the pineapple so you render sizes about ¼ inch in shape and add to a medium sized mixing bowl. Proceed by removing seeds and stem from the red pepper and dice. The sizes of the pieces should be slightly smaller than the pineapple but don’t fret too much over these details. Add red pepper to the same bowl and add lime juice, salt, cilantro/parsley and mix together so everything is evenly coated. Set aside until the burgers are ready to be dressed for the occasion.

Preheat the oven to 325°F and place brioche buns on a clean baking sheet. Take out a skillet, preferably a 12-inch one that can handle medium heat. Heat 2 Tbsp of olive oil over medium heat and add 3 patties when the pan sizzles with a drop of water. Browning both sides of the burgers (4-5 minutes per side), carefully transfer to a clean plate and cover lightly with a tent of aluminum foil. This is most likely the best time to lightly toast the brioche buns in the preheated oven. A few minutes is all it takes so keep an eye on the buns while you finish up your last 3 patties. Return to the skillet and add another 2 Tbsp of olive oil and repeat the process with the remaining 3 patties. The buns should be out of the oven by this point.

Next, top the burgers with the zesty pineapple & red pepper relish we made earlier, add the top bun and now you’re ready to dig in! I personally love to dress the buns with an additional drizzle of Tannenbaum’s Blueberry, Sumac & Cinnamon. Hmm, something might still be missing. If a stand-alone burger isn’t completely satisfying, may I suggest adding a side of sweet potato fries? They can be store bought in the freezer section or you can make them at home in the oven. Keeping this recipe easy, you can bake from frozen right as you start your first round of burgers, still leaving the oven hot and ready for the brioche buns. Sweet potatoes lose heat quickly so I would suggest placing them back in the oven after your buns are finished so they maintain a crisp crunch. Keeping with the flavors of Tannenbaum’s Blueberry, Sumac & Cinnamon, place a ramekin of our signature sauce on the plate for a delicious dip for your crisp sweet potato fries. This sauce is definitely versatile and this recipe is evidence of that claim.

“What you do makes a difference, and you have to decide what kind of a difference you want to make.” – Jane Goodall

Be kind & enjoy friends! – Harvey Tannenbaum

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"How do I choose flavors? I really don’t know. I started off with apricot because I like apricots. Then it becomes a game to see what other fruits would work. My wife likes strawberries, so I did some strawberry. It just comes to me."

HARVEY TANNENBAUM, ON PREFERENCES