Veggie Loaded Burgers and Fries

It’s no secret that I love veggie burgers. I know that for a lot of people that eat meat, they think they’re a sad comparisons to the real deal, and are less than flavorful. Since I very rarely eat meat these days, veggie burgers are a quick and easy addition to my weekday lunches, and sometimes dinner. But before I was conscious about my meat intake, I enjoyed veggie burgers. My favorites are Morningstar Farm’s Spicy Black Bean, and Dr. Praeger’s California. However, I’ve always been willing to try and make my own.

Over the summer I tried my hand at some, and they were more like sloppy joes, which was okay but somewhat frustrating. So, when I received the Taste of Home Cookbook from a coworker for Christmas, I was excited to see a few different veggie burger recipes inside. It’s a really easy recipe, that would probably be even easier if I had  a food processor to mash the beans. But even still, the process of mashing the beans and combining everything only took about 5 to 10 minutes. After trying to cook them according to the recipe, I resolved to just throwing them in the oven, which proved to be very successful.

I served the burgers alongside some parsnip fries. Confession: up until this meal, I had never, ever, eaten a parsnip. I was a little nervous when I decided to make them just because it was a new taste for both me, and my fiancé. But since we’re both always up for trying new things, and I’ve seen them on plenty of blogs that I consider to have good taste, I gave them a shot. Thankfully, I wasn’t disappointed. I’d prefer sweet potato fries over these, but they were a nice change of pace! I just peeled and sliced them, tossed them with some Adobo and roasted them at 350 degrees for about 40 minutes.

Black Bean Cakes – adapted from The Taste of Home Cookbook
– Serves 4 –

2 (15 oz.) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
1 egg white, lightly beaten
2 green onions, finely chopped
1/4 cup plus 2 Tbsp minced fresh cilantro
1 tsp chili powder
1/4 tsp dried oregano
1/4 tsp ground cumin
4 teaspoons canola oil
1/2 cup frozen corn, thawed (I used canned)
1/2 cup chunky salsa
1/4 cup fat-free sour cream (I used plain Chobani Greek yogurt)

1. In a large bowl, mash beans with a fork. Stir in the egg white, onions, 1/4 cup of cilantro, chili powder, oregano, and cumin. Shape into eight 2 1/2 inch patties.
2. In a small nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray, cook patties in batches in the oil for 2-4 minutes on each side or until golden brown*
3. In a small bowl, combine the corn, salsa, and remaining cilantro; spoon over cakes, and garnish with sour cream (or in my case, Greek yogurt).

*Like I said, I had trouble with this. So I threw them in the oven at 350 degrees for about 15-20 minutes till they were heated throughout and had a firm crisp (but not to crispy) top.