Black Bean Burger with Wilted Walla Walla Sweet Onion and Cabbage Slaw
Wilted Walla Walla Sweet Onion and Cabbage Slaw
Since it is grilling season again thoughts return to old favorites like the simple burger. There are several components that make that burger special. First comes the quality of the ingredients. I like to start with organic, no hormone and free-range beef. Then of course the bun must be considered. Many, including myself appreciate a rich brioche style bun that is soft and yielding. I am fortunate enough to live close to the Breadfarm Bakery in Edison, Washington. They produce a delicious bun that is both rich and yielding with the added benefit of being multigrain and a charming flavor. Of course a slice of ripe tomato, a few slices of avocado and pickles round out the essentials with the exception of the lettuce and sauce. For a nice variation on the lettuce and pickle I like to create a wilted cabbage slaw. This slaw is as good alone or on fish tacos as it is on a burger. It is especially good when I pick the cabbage fresh from the organic garden and use Walla Walla sweet onions. As I said quality is important. So when you have the right ingredients and want a change try this recipe.
1 quart very thinly sliced green cabbage (about 12 ounces or ¼ a large head)
1 cup very thinly sliced Walla Walla sweet onion (about 3 ounces)
½ teaspoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon thinly sliced garlic (about 2 large cloves)
½ teaspoon cumin seeds
2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons cilantro leaves, chopped
1. Slice the cabbage and onions on a mandoline or with an attachment to a food processor to achieve a uniform very thin slice. Toss together in a bowl with the salt.
2. In a small sauté pan heat the oil until it shimmers. Add the garlic and cumin seeds. Cook until the smell of garlic and cumin reaches your nose and the garlic has softened but not turned brown. Remove from the heat and pour over the cabbage mixture.
3. Add the vinegar and toss all together, mixing it well as it wilts. Taste, Think, Transform with salt and/or vinegar.
4. When cool, toss in the cilantro.
The quintessential sauce for a burger is ketchup and mustard of course. However, thinking outside the norm a spicy aïoli can really perk the flavor up a notch. The following recipe is best made at least an hour before using and can be made up to one day ahead.
Smoked Paprika Aïoli
½ cup whole milk Greek yogurt
1 tablespoon organic mayonnaise or vegan mayonnaise
½ teaspoon mashed garlic
½ teaspoon smoked paprika
½ teaspoon lime juice
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
1. Mix all the ingredients together until thoroughly blended. Taste, Think, Transform with salt, lime juice and/or smoked paprika.
There are numerous plant-based burger recipes online, in stores and cookbooks. With the cumin and cilantro flavored slaw and smoked paprika aïoli the best vegetable burger would probably be one based on black beans to keep with a Spanish flavor profile. Created here is a black bean burger with tempeh, a protein cake of fermented soybeans. Tempeh originated in Indonesia but has become a vegan protein and nutrient rich meat substitute. Trade Joe’s makes a three grain tempeh with rice, barley and millet added to the soybeans which is used in this recipe. This is quick and easy to make. They taste so good and are packed with healthy nutrients. Give them a try.
Black Bean and Tempeh Patties
8 ounces organic 3 grain tempeh from Trader Joe’s
1 (15 ounce) can organic black beans
¼ medium onion, chopped (about 3 ounces)
1 teaspoon garlic, minced
¼ cup parsley
1 teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon ground coriander
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
⅛ teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
¼ cup avocado oil
1. Preheat oven to 375⁰F. Line a baking pan with parchment paper or a silpat mat.
2. Place all the ingredients together in a food processor. Pulse until thoroughly blended. Taste, Think, Transform with salt, lime juice and/or cayenne pepper.
3. Divide the mixture into six even patties. Brush with avocado oil on each side. Place on the parchment paper and into the preheated oven. Bake for fifteen minutes. Remove from the oven and serve.