Black Bean Quinoa Sliders
As a meat eater myself, I actually love vegan and vegetarian burgers. The flavor combinations that you can create are innumerable, they’re cheap and they are usually are fairly good for you compared to the fat that comes with beef. The one issue that I have with them is the same that I think many people have; they can be a bit hard to work with. You usually have this sloppy bean mix that falls apart when cooking it, making you explode into a fit of expletives that scare your significant other and cats, especially Charlotte. I’m not going to tell you that my recipe here is perfect, but what I realized was that size really does matter and that instead of trying to make full sized burgers, which tend to crumble under their own weight, that slider sized is much more manageable… and less stressful on your household.
2 Cans Black Beans, drained and rinsed
1 Small Red Onion diced
3 Cloves Garlic minced
4oz Button Mushrooms diced
1 Jalapeño sliced
1/4 Cup Flax Meal
1/2 Cup Oat Bran
1/4 Cup Tahini
1/4 Cup Quinoa
1/3 Cup Cilantro chopped
2 Tspn Cumin Seeds toasted and ground
1 Tspn Coriander Seeds toasted and ground
Salt and Pepper
Vegetable Oil for Frying
This slider mix works great as burgers, but is also great by itself as a patty or over some sautéed kale; so if you’re looking to keep the meal entirely gluten free, don’t feel restricted to buns.
First take care of the quinoa. Add a half cup of water to a pot with a pinch of salt and simmer it. Once simmering, add the quinoa and cook until the water is absorbed. Don’t leave any water in the pot and this will make the bean mix even looser.
Remove the mix to a bowl and add the rest of the ingredients, including the cooked quinoa. Mix well. This mix will seem very loose and make you think, “No f***ing way is this going to work,” but the flax and oat bran will take a few minutes to fully absorb what liquid they can.
Cover a sheet tray with wax paper or a silpat and form your sliders as best you can. I used roughly 1/3 cup per slider. Place them on the paper or silpat and when you are finished, put the tray in the freezer for at least 30 minutes. I went for 40 minutes and they were easy to work with at that point.
Heat about 1/8″ vegetable oil in a heavy pan on medium high. Once hot, very gently place 3-4 patties in the pan and fry for 4 minutes per side. If you have a fish spatula, this process is much easier. You can even slide the raw patties onto the spatula and lay them in the oil. To flip, don’t be afraid to use you fingers to help guide things in place. If you are too heavy handed, you make mash the slider or splash hot oil around when you flip them.
Drain on paper towels and when ready to serve, garnish with avocado, sliced red onion, sriracha and jalapeño as a few suggestions.