Anita Bean’s book The Vegan Athlete’s Cookbook offers nutritious meals to help you perform at your best. Courtesy of Bloomsbury Publishing, Anita introduces her recipe for a black bean burger below
‘So, what do you eat at a BBQ then?’ is a question I get asked at every BBQ party. In reply, I point them to this scrumptious recipe, which is guaranteed to satisfy the most sceptical non-vegan.
Made with black beans and walnuts, these easy burgers are full of amazing flavour and a brilliant source of plant protein, fibre, folate, magnesium and iron. Serve on a bun with all the trimmings or with grilled slices of courgettes and aubergines, and toasted flatbread.
Recipe – makes four large or eight small burgers
50g wholegrain bread
2tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 large shallots or ½ red onion, finely chopped
1 small aubergine, cut into 1cm dice
1 small carrot, grated
1 garlic clove, crushed
400g can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp ground cumin
½ tsp ground cinnamon
¼ tsp cayenne, or to taste
1 tbsp lemon juice
3 tbsp finely chopped coriander
Seeded wholemeal buns
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
For the guacamole
1 large ripe avocado
1 tbsp lemon or lime juice
¼ red onion, finely chopped
½ garlic clove, crushed
1 tomato, skinned* and chopped
1 tbsp fresh coriander, finely chopped
How to make it
To make the burgers, tear the bread into large pieces, add to the bowl of a food processor and process until you have breadcrumbs. Transfer to a mixing bowl and set aside. Add the walnuts to the food processor, pulse until crumbly (but not too ﬁne), then tip into the mixing bowl with the breadcrumbs.
Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large frying pan over a high heat and fry the shallots or red onion, aubergine and grated carrot for 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Add the garlic and continue cooking for 1 further minute.
Tip the mixture into the bowl of the food processor with the beans, spices, lemon juice, salt and freshly ground black pepper; process for about 30 seconds or until you have a coarse purée. It should not be totally smooth – you still want some whole beans in there for texture. Transfer to the bowl with the breadcrumbs and walnuts and mix in the coriander.
Use a large spoon to scoop out 4 or 8 patties and ﬂatten them into round shapes. Transfer to a large plate and place in the fridge for 30 minutes to ﬁrm up.
Brush the patties with the remaining 1 tablespoon oil and grill on a BBQ or fry in a large, non-stick frying pan over a medium heat for 5 minutes on each side until golden. Alternatively bake in a preheated oven at 190°C/fan 170°C/gas mark 5 for 25 minutes.
For the guacamole, halve the avocado, remove the stone and scoop out the ﬂesh into a bowl. Mash with the lemon or lime juice. Stir through the onion, garlic, tomato, coriander and seasoning.
Serve the burgers on wholemeal seeded buns with a spoonful of guacamole and tomatoes, red onion, lettuce and pickles, if you like.
*To skin the tomato, make a cross in the skin at the base, plunge into a bowl of just boiled water for 30–60 seconds. Remove the tomato from the water and peel with a sharp knife. The skin should come away easily.
Nutrition per large burger
19g fat (2g saturates)
20g carbs (4g total sugars)
Including one wholemeal bun and one tablespoon guacamole:
33g fat (5g saturates)
45g carbs (7g total sugars)