As I’ve had such a long break from writing this blog there were loads of tasty things I could have chosen to write about in my return post. However, I decided to tell you about something I made recently which proved very popular on Twitter and Facebook, as well as in this house.
Spicy Bean Burgers. Cheap. Easy. Totally tasty. That ticks plenty of boxes with me. As I’ve mentioned before, I’m the antithesis of a food snob and I’m proud to celebrate the so-called low-rent food I enjoy. I’m not ashamed to admit that I like a trip to Burger King now and again. Sometimes unhealthy, lukewarm, processed food served in cardboard is just what you need. These days I’m a big fan of the Bacon Double Cheeseburger but there was a time when BK’s Spicy Bean Burger was my hangover food of choice. For some reason memories of these popped into my head recently and as we don’t have a Burger King within staggering distance I decided to make my own.
Here’s the recipe. This could definitely be tweaked to include any herbs or spices, etc. you prefer. Extra vegetables could be added or different beans used but I used what I had in the house at the time. I didn’t really want any extra shopping to be involved in the making of this dinner beyond the buns and salad leaves I used.
Spicy Bean Burgers and Crispy Crinkle Spuds (makes 5 -6 burgers*)
For the burgers:
1 tin butter beans
1 tin red kidney beans
1 small red onion, finely chopped
2 spring onions, finely chopped
1 large clove of garlic, minced
Tsp each ground coriander, ground cumin, crushed chillies (if I’d had any fresh chillies I would have used 2 of those finely chopped)
Salt and ground pepper
Small bunch fresh mint, finely chopped
2 slices worth of brown bread breadcrumbs (white would be fine)
2 eggs, lightly beaten (1 is for dipping the burgers in before coating with breadcrumbs)
Approx 2 cups of panko breadcrumbs
Oil for frying
For the potatoes:
As many potatoes as you want to eat! 3 – 4 makes loads for 2 people.
To make the burgers:
Drain and mash up the butter and kidney beans. I left a few of the kidney beans almost whole. Lightly fry the red and spring onions with the minced garlic. Add to the beans. Add spices, herbs, salt and pepper, breadcrumbs and lightly beaten egg. Mix everything together well and put in the fridge for a while to firm up.
Get 3 bowls. In one put some seasoned flour, lightly beaten egg in the second, and the panko breadcrumbs in the third. Shape the bean mix into burger shapes. It might be easier to flour your hands first. Dip each into the flour, then egg, then panko breadcrumbs. Heat oil to a medium temperature. Fry each burger for about 4 minutes each side until golden brown and crispy. As I had the oven on to cook the potatoes, I put the cooked burgers into the oven for about 5 minutes just to make absolutely sure they were hot right in the middle.
*If like me you’re only cooking 2 burgers at a time you can freeze the rest before you dip in the flour, egg and breadcrumbs.
To make the potatoes:
Put the oven on to 220 degrees. Put a good glug of oil into an oven dish and put in the oven to get really hot. Peel and thickly slice your potatoes. I have a crinkle cut slicer that my Mum gave me. This is a gadget she’s had since I was a child which she then gifted to me. I’ve never seen them in the shops so if you don’t have one just slice the potatoes with a knife. They won’t be crinkly but they’ll still be good! Parboil the potatoes for about 5 minutes. Drain and then shake them gently to rough up the edges, (particularly important if you’re not using a crinkle slicer.) Sprinkle about 1 Tbs dried semolina onto the cooked potatoes and shake gently to cover them. This is the secret of super-crunchy potatoes, (thank you Nigella!) Put the sliced potatoes into the hot fat and cook for about 30 – 45 minutes. The time is really dependant on your oven and the amount of potatoes you’re cooking. You should turn the potatoes halfway through cooking. Once cooked, drain on scrunched up kitchen roll before serving.
The burgers are great in a sliced burger bun with just a bit of rocket and mayonnaise and for me plastic cheese is essential, (something else I refuse to apologise for!) I use the more expensive cheese slices, not the ‘bargain’ ones but I know for some this is still a travesty. It’s our cheese of choice for a burger though. The crinkle potatoes should be on the side, salted and served with tomato sauce. The less fuss with this the better I think.
So there you go. A really easy, filling and economical meal. I’m not going to pretend it’s healthy due to the frying but sometimes in life you need a treat. It may also be a way of getting children to eat things like kidney beans although, as I have no direct experience of this, I’m making no promises!
N.B. I’ve just been informed by @foodiequine that Pampered Chef sell a crinkle slicer. Thanks Claire. Looks very ‘foncy’ compared to my old antique!
Another N.B.! @FabFood4All has also found (cheaper than Pampered Chef) versions of the crinkle cutter via a Google search so if you fancy buying one I suggest you might want to do the same.