Before you fire up the barbecue for your 4th of July picnic, take a minute to read Ten Reasons Why You Should Eat Less Meat. Then, instead of automatically serving up hamburgers, hot dogs, steak or chicken, get creative! Need some help? Try this recipe for a delicious veggie burger courtesy of the wonderful vegan cookbook, The Happy Herbivore, by Lindsay S. Nixon.
1 15-oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
1/4 c fresh cilantro, minced
1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp dried oregano
cayenne, salt, and pepper to taste
Breadcrumbs (buy at store or make your own - toast whole-grain bread until dry, then pulse in food processor)
Whole-wheat hamburger buns
* Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease grill pan, or cookie sheet if you prefer to use your oven.
* Pulse beans in food processor until mashed well, or mash manually using a potato masher or fork.
* Transfer to a mixing bowl and stir in cilantro and spices, plus salt and pepper.
* Add breadcrumbs as necessary until the mixture can be handled and isn't terribly sticky, about 1/4 cup.
* If after 1/4 cup it's still too sticky and difficult to work with, refrigerate 5 to 10 minutes
* Shape mixture into three patties.
* Lightly spray each patty with cooking spray and grill or bake 7 minutes.
* Serve immediately on buns, along with lettuce, tomatoes, and whatever other condiments you prefer.
Note: This recipe makes three burgers; double to make six.
(Photo courtesy of The Happy Herbivore Cookbook, p. 87)