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It’s Meatless Monday-Smoky Black Bean and Red Pepper Burger with Tomato and Corn Relish

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One thing that budget and vegetarian recipes have in common is the need for something to give them a little more pizzazz. So on each visit to the supermarket, one of my goals is to find a new ingredient that will do just that. My latest find was smoked cumin. It’s sat on the pantry shelf for a few weeks but I’ve been itching to give it a test drive. Last week I thought I’d add it to this recipe. Don’t worry if you can’t find the smoked variety, regular cumin is fine too.

The relish part of this recipe was inspired by the cherry tomatoes, cilantro, and ears of corn in last week’s CSA box. I think they are a perfect match for a black bean burger.

For the Burger
1 15 ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 red pepper, seeded and diced
1 onion, peeled and chopped
1 cup breadcrumbs
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon smoked cumin
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1 tablespoon vital wheat gluten ( I found this holds the mixture together better than flour but if you can’t find it, use flour)
oil of sauteeing

For the Relish
3 ears of corn, remove corn from cobs
1 cup sliced cherry tomatoes
Handful of cilantro (more or less, depending on your love of this herb)
Juice of one lime
Salt and pepper to taste

For the burger-
Put the black beans, egg, breadcrumbs into a food processor.
In a skillet over medium high heat, heat oil and then add chopped peppers and onions and cook until slightly golden.
Add the cumin, salt, pepper, garlic and onion powders, and the paprika and cook the mixture for another five minutes, making sure everything is well incorporated into the peppers and onions.
Remove from heat and let cool slightly.
Add the mixture to the beans in the food processor and pulse until everything pulls together.
Put mixture into fridge and let it cool for about ten minutes.
Remove and make the burger patties. ( I made 7 from this mixture but depending on how big or small you want them, it will vary.
Place the burgers on a plate and let sit in the fridge while you make the relish.

For the relish

In a glass dish add the corn, tomatoes, cilantro, lime juice and salt and pepper and stir together. Place in fridge until ready to serve.

In the same skillet you cooked the peppers and onions, over medium high heat, heat the oil, and cook the burgers for about 2-3 minutes on each side.

Serve immediately with some of the relish on the side.

Serves 4-5

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