The Best Spicy Bean Burgers, Mexican Style

The Best Spicy Bean Burger, Mexican Style

¡Viva México! These knock-your-socks-off, totally delicious veggie bean burgers are all about Mexican flavours: spices, coriander, spring onions, lime, beans and crushed up tortilla chips. You can go as hot as you like by adding chilli or your favourite hot sauce. Those are my kind of ingredients.  I’ve made dozens of types of veggie burger and these are probably my favourites. Give the mix a bit of time for those flavours to mingle and the texture to firm up, and that’s what makes these patties great. There’s no crumble factor with these, making them perfect for frying pan, grill or BBQ. It’s so often that veggie burgers don’t have the right texture.

Serve in buns, or wrapped up in tortillas, topped with  salsa, pickles… anything you want.

The Best Spicy Bean Burgers, Mexican Style (dairy-free, egg-free, nut-free, soya-free, sesame-free, gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan)

Mexican Spiced bean burgers

makes 4 patties

  • 2 handfuls tortilla chips
  • 1 tin pinto or borlotti beans
  • 1 handful of coriander
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 spring onions, sliced
  • 1 squeeze lime juice
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 tbsps salsa, preferably fridge salsa, or Mexican hot sauce (or combination of both!)

– Whizz up the tortilla chips in a food processor (or crush) until they’re a small rough crumb

– Add all the other ingredients to the food processor and pulse until well combined.

– Turn into a bowl and leave for an hour or so, for the flavours to mix. Taste and preseason if necessary.

– Form into 4 even sized patties, cover and refrigerate until needed

– Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Centigrade/Gas Mark 6

– Fry in a small amount of oil until nicely browned

– Then move to the oven for 10-15 minutes.

– Serve in buns with garnished with more salsa

20150516-074023.jpg

 

 

Knock your socks off tasty bean burger, Mexican Style

 

Mexican Pinto Bean Soup

IMG_5697

Sometimes some purse friendly, super cheap food is what you need – this is the perfect recipe for that week before payday when you’re trying to use up the contents of the cupboard rather than yet another pricy trip to the supermarket. A great comfort soup, as hot as you want it to be, perfect for these colder than expected early spring days. The blitzed beans give a smooth silky texture to the soup, but like many Mexican dishes, it’s all about the garnishing touches. Crunchy tortilla chips are great for texture, and I wouldn’t do this kind of soup without some lime, hot chilli sauce and coriander. The beauty of this is you can tailor each bowl to just how each person likes it.

Mexican Pinto Bean Soup (dairy-free, egg-free, nut-free, soya-free, gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan)

serves 4

IMG_5695

serves 4

  • 2 onions, peeled and chopped
  • 2 sticks of celery, peeled and chopped
  • 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • Sprig of rosemary
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • Chilli flakes, to taste, I added a pinch so everyone could enjoy
  • 1 tin tomatoes
  • 2 cups soaked pinto beans
  • 500ml stock

– Sweat the onions, carrots, celery, rosemary and garlic until softened but not browned

– Stir in the cumin, chilli flakes and smoked paprika and cook out for a couple of minutes

-Pour in the tinned tomatoes, beans and stock

– Simmer for 15-20 minutes until totally cooked through.

– Blitz to a silky smooth soup, then taste and season as desired.

– Serve topped with tortilla chips, fresh coriander, a squeeze of lime and a good dash of hot sauce.

IMG_5698

 

 

Mexican spicy polenta and corn cakes

20141011-074348.jpg

I think there is a perception that Mexican food is on the whole quite humble and not refined. This is a delicate, elegant dish that could make a small starter or larger main. This is another one inspired by The Gate Restaurant – a trip to a good veggie restaurant always fires up my imagination. These polenta and corn cakes are really flavourful, crispy and went fabulously with my black bean salsa, chipotle infused sweet potatoes and shallots, and a good dose of avocado and coriander mayonnaise.

We also found the left over corn cakes made wonderful crispy polenta fries that we served with a salad the next day.

Mexican Polenta Corn Cakes (dairy-free, egg-free, nut-free, sesame-free, soya-free, gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan)

20141011-074429.jpg

serves 4

  • 100g quick cook polenta
  • 400ml water
  • 1 tbsp fresh thyme, finely chopped
  • 1/2 tin of sweetcorn
  • 1/2-1 red chilli, finely sliced (I left it out of the children’s half as our chillies were hot hot HOT)
  • Salt

– Bring the water to the boil
– Pour in the polenta in a fine stream, then whisk over a medium heat for about 5 minutes until the polenta has thickened and no longer sticks to the side of the pan but forms a large ball around the whisk
– Stir in the sweetcorn and thyme and salt to taste. As its essentially very bland you may need to add more than you’d think
– Pour onto a flat baking tray that has been lined with cling film
– Cover the top with more cling film and form into an even square or rectangle
– Place in the fridge to firm up, at least 30 mins
– Cut into desired shapes – squares, circles or fries work well
– Pan fry til golden, then transfer to a medium oven for 10 minutes to completely warm through
– Serve with the black bean salsa, roasted sweet potatoes and this wonderful avocado mayonnaise for a veritable mexican feast

Avocado and Coriander Mayonnaise (dairy-free, egg-free, nut-free, soya-free, sesame-free, gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan)

20141011-074510.jpg

  • 1 avocado
  • Juice of 1 lime (use less for a non-Mexican mayonnaise)
  • 1 tsp vinegar
  • salt and pepper
  • 3 tbsps extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tbsps sunflower oil
  • 1 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1 tbsp tomato ketchup
  • 1 small handful coriander, chopped

– Whiz together the avocado, lime and vinegar in a food processor.

– Season.

– Add the other ingredients and whiz until smooth.

– Taste and adjust the seasoning.

– Add a little more sunflower oil if too thick.

– Keeps well in the fridge for a couple of days

Black Bean Salsa

20141011-075741.jpg

This is a nifty little recipe for an interesting variation on a ‘regular’ salsa. Inspired by a delicious lunch I had at the fabulous the Gate Restaurant the other day, this is my take on black bean salsa. Wonderful scooped up with tortilla chips, as an addition to a wonderful Mexican main course (recipe coming soon!) or a topping for nachos or any tortilla based dish. It’s also the kind of dish that is enjoyable to prepare, just simple ingredients put together in an uncomplicated way.

There’s nothing wrong with a tomato salsa (especially this awesome salsa), but it’s good to have more in your locker, and for me a great new way with beans that is fresh and zingy.

Black Bean Salsa (dairy-free, egg-free, nut-free, soya-free, sesame-free, gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan)

20141011-075652.jpg

  • 1 bell pepper, cut into small dice
  • 1 shallot, very finely chopped
  • 8-10 cherry tomatoes, chopped fairly small
  • 1 tin of black beans, drained and rinsed
  • Large handful of coriander, roughly chopped
  • Juice of 1 lime (or more to taste if you have a dry old line that gives little juice!)
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt, to taste

1. Mix together all the ingredients in a bowl and set aside for about half an hour for the flavours to mingle

2. Taste and adjust the salt and lime juice accordingly

3. Enjoy!

Mexican Taco Soup

 

IMG_7876It’s funny how you suddenly feel like eating a certain dish. Spring has suddenly hit, but I just really fancied some soup. I didn’t really feel like a warming wintery root veg based concoction, or one that was totally summery. Difficult!

So spurred on by a half eaten pack of tortilla chips, here is my resulting Mexican bean soup. It managed to tick all the boxes, being quite light and refreshing with the lime and coriander; but also hearty and warming with the beans and spice.

I would say the topping of crushed up tortilla chips, fresh coriander and an extra squeeze of lime is absolutely essential to bring a basic mexican bean soup into the realms of deliciousness. A classic ‘meal in a bowl’ type dish.

Mexican Taco Soup (dairy-free, egg-free, nut-free, soya-free, sesame-free, gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan)

IMG_7877serves 4

  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 red pepper, chopped
  • 1 clove of garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • Splash of wine or water
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp chilli flakes or 1 small chilli, finely chopped
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 tin mixed beans, drained
  • 1 tbsp tomato purée
  • 1 tin chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tin vegetable stock
  • 1/2 tin of sweetcorn, or 1 cob shaved of its kernals
  • juice of 1/4 lime

To garnish:

  • Fresh coriander
  • Crushed tortilla chips
  • squeeze of fresh lime

– Saute the onions and peppers in the oil until soft and just starting to turn golden.

– Add the garlic and chill and cook until fragrant.

– Add the other spices and cook out for a minute or two.

– Pour in the splash of wine to deglaze the pan. Once the wine and reduced to almost nothing, stir in the tomato puree and again cook for a couple of minutes to get rid of any raw flavour.

– Pour in the beans, tinned tomatoes and stock. Season and cook for 10-15 minutes.

– Taste and adjust the seasoning. Add the sweetcorn and lime juice. Cook for another 5 minutes.

– Serve garnished with crushed tortilla chips, fresh coriander and an extra squeeze of lime.

IMG_7878

Mushrooms in Adobo Sauce

I think it’s the sudden chill in the air that has made us want to turn up the heat in our meals. Besides, D is a sucker for anything Mexican and a bit spicy. Warning though, this recipe is HOT, not one for the kids unless they have a more adventurous palate than mine do! You could use the basic adobo sauce in a number of ways, it worked well with these mushrooms, one vegetable that I wouldn’t always serve as part of a Mexican meal, so it’s nice to include them.

Mushrooms in Adobo Sauce (dairy-free, nut-free, sesame-free, soya-free, gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan)

IMG_6280

serves 4

  • 4-6 dried chipotle peppers
  • 1/2 onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tbsp fresh thyme leaves
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tbsps olive oil
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree
  • 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tbsp Demerara sugar
  • 1/2 jar tomato passata
  • 500g button mushrooms

– Soak the chillies in boiling water until softened. Cut off the stalks and remove as many seeds as possible.

– In a blender, whizz together the chillies, onion, garlic, thyme, oregano and water until well blended

– Heat the oil in a sauce pan, then add the chilli puree and sauce for a couple of minutes

– Add the tomato puree, vinegars and sugar and continue cooking.

– Simmer for 10-15 minutes until thickened.

– Add the passata and continue to cook.

– Add about 500g button mushroom to the sauce and cook for about 15 minutes.

– Serve with rice, refried beans and favourite Mexican salsas.

IMG_6281

Sweetcorn Salsa

You may have noticed my fondness for Mexican cuisine – there is something so fresh and vibrant about the flavours and that kick of chilli that I find irresistible. A salsa ticks the fresh and colourful boxes and it’s a really healthy dip – no need for calorific creams or mayonnaises when you top your tortilla chips with this.

This sweetcorn salsa makes a bit of a change from a tomato-based one, and gives a great crunch to your dip. Enjoy as a dip, on a tostada, or even just as a side dish.

Sweetcorn Salsa (dairy-free, egg-free, nut-free, soya-free, sesame-free, gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan)

IMG_5201

makes 1 bowlful

  • 1/2 red onion, very finely chopped
  • 6 small or 2 large tomatoes, roughly chopped
  • 1-2 red chillis, seeded and very finely chopped
  • juice of 1/2 a lime
  • handful of fresh coriander, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup corn kernels (tinned or frozen is just fine)
  • 1 tbsp olive oil

– Combine all the ingredients.

– Let sit for half an hour and then taste.

– Adjust the seasoning as necessary.

IMG_5204

Mexican bean salad

Spring has arrived and the sun was shining – what better excuse to make some salads? You might have notice that I’m rather obsessed with salads – they’ll certainly be many more coming along if the sun keeps shining (it’s actually raining today, so you might get soup next!)

Beans are such a great protein boost for veggies that they make the ideal basis of a substantial salad. Since beans make me think of Mexican cuisine – here is my Mexican take on a classic marinated bean salad featuring lime, cumin, avocado and coriander. The sugary sweetness is key also. Add more chilli if you like it fiery.

Mexican Bean Salad (dairy-free, egg-free, nut-free, soya-free, sesame-free, gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan)

IMG_5045

serves 4

  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp lime zest
  • Juice of 1/2 lime
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 tins of beans, drained and rinsed (I used borlotti and kidney)
  • 1/4 red onion, finely sliced
  • 1 red chilli, finely chopped
  • Handful of cherry tomatoes, halved
  • Large handful coriander leaves
  • 1 avocado, sliced

– Mix together the sugar, vinegar, lime juice and zest, olive oil, cumin and salt and pepper.

– Add the beans, onion and chilli to the marinade. Let sit in the fridge for as long as possible for the flavours to meld.
– Add the tomatoes, coriander and avocado
– Serve

IMG_5047

Mexican Green Rice

After the choc-fest of Easter it’s time for some healthy, savoury foods .

Something Mexican, I thought. Whilst it can seem that any Mexican vegetarian dish is just an amalgamation of the same things (chilli, tomatoes, chillies, coriander, lime, beans, tortillas), I just love all those ingredients and often have an urge for Mexican  food and nothing else will do. We do make a lot of tortilla-based dishes, but don’t often do anything interesting with rice.

This green rice is a great Mexican side, especially when served with refried beans (recipe to follow). It transforms plain, bland rice into a colourful herby (and spicy if you choose) option.

Mexican Green Rice (dairy-free, egg-free,nut-free, sesame-free, soya-free, gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan)

IMG_4612

serves 4

  • 1 cup rice, uncooked
  • 1/2 cup (packed) coriander
  • 1 cup (packed) spinach and rocket mixed
  • 1/2 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 green chilli, finely chopped (optional)
  • 1 1/2 cups water or vegetable stock
  • 1 tbsp olive oil

– In a blender, blitz together the water/stock, coriander and rocket and spinach.

– Saute the onion (and chilli if using) in the oil until softened but not browned.

– Add the rice and stir to combine.

– Pour in the green liquid and season well.

IMG_4609

– Place a cartouche (parchment lid) over the rice and leave to bubble on a low heat for 17 minutes.

– Take off the cartouche and fluff up with a fork. Taste and adjust the seasoning.

IMG_4611

The Ultimate Mexican Avocado Sandwich

This recipe uses my delicious avocado mayonnaise and propels a standard avocado sandwich to the realms of ‘ultimate’. I remember eating the most delicious sandwiches in Mexico, and this combination whisks you straight there with its bundles of fresh flavour. No other sandwich since has lived up to this one!

The Ultimate Mexican Avocado Sandwich (dairy-free, egg-free, nut-free, soya-free, sesame-free, vegetarian and vegan)

IMG_4618

makes 1

  • 1 ciabatta roll
  • 1-2 tbsps avocado mayonnaise
  • 1/2 avocado, sliced
  • salt and pepper
  • 3 cherry tomatoes/1 tomato, sliced
  • coriander
  • salad leaves
  • drizzle of fridge salsa, or any other salsa

– Build the sandwich with the ingredients listed above!

– Make sure to season well.

– Enjoy, with plenty of napkins!

IMG_4622