Saturday, February 13, 2010

Mixing It Up

My big challenge is making food that has enough protein to satisfy FabHubs while not relying nightly on soy, soy processed foods, or veggie only meals.

While I know beans are a huge source of satisfaction for him and seem to generate the least amount of “meat missing”...I find I am not using them enough at all.   I definitely need to put some more energy into using beans more often.

This week I decided to go ahead and make some black bean burgers, hoping this would do the trick for him.

The past two nights we actually ended up having the same exact thing for dinner…not leftovers reheated but each cooked fresh again.

Of course I love the sweet potatoes and we have so many of those it was a great excuse to use them (fries with the burgers of course!).

I did these first since they would take the longest to cook.

First I washed and cut them into fry shapes.



Then I put them in my giant blue bowl that I seem to use for everything…and tossed them with olive oil, salt, and chili powder until they were well coated…and promptly forgot to shoot the picture of that!

Into the oven they went…single layer, 425 degrees, stirred every 15 or so minutes until they were brown and roasted and ummmmmm.


Next we had TWO heads of local Florida chard that I had to use, from two different weeks of produce box deliveries…those green bags sure worked their magic here.  The old head looked just as fresh as the one I got this past Monday!

I decided to go ahead with the two heads of chard.  But by the time they were both washed, chopped, and ready to go I saw that this was a huge quantity and would be too much for us so I ended up cooking only half.

I chopped fresh garlic and tossed that in a large cast iron pan with hot olive oil and cooked those a bit…then piled in as much chard as I could get to comfortably fit in the pan.  The rest went back into a green bag…to be used the next night.


Piled in the pan…DSCF0174

Starting to wilt some…DSCF0175

Now starting to look really tender.  I do cover the pan with a large lid in between photos and stirring to help soften the greens.


Once the greens were done I poured sprinkled a generous amount of fresh grated romano cheese over it…this and the garlic made the dish!  Seriously…coming from someone who never ate veggies growing up…I could eat this whole dish myself!DSCF0177

Romano all melty….YUMMMMMMDSCF0178

Okay…enough chard..onto the burgers. 

FabHubs had bought the huge can of beans and so the bean mixture ended being a huge amount…enough for two dinners and then some.

After two nights of making burgers I still ended up freezing some for a quick-ready future dish.

These looked pretty darn disgusting in the mixing process:


Really…they tasted much better than they looked!  I mashed a drained and rinsed can of black beans in a bowl while FabTeen put into a blender a rough chopped purple onion (it’s what I had), some oats, and some water to get it to puree.  We added the liquidy mixture to the beans, along with two eggs.  I did debate subbing out flax eggs for the eggs…but decided to just go with the eggs.


Really it is just like making burgers, except with mashed black beans instead of the ground beef.  I leave some of the beans chunky too.  Of course we added garlic…we are a garlicky kind of family.DSCF0172

The mixture was too liquidy the first night…so I dumped in a bunch of panko bread crumbs trying to thicken it up some.  It worked…but really the burgers were much easier to form the second night after the leftover mixture had sat in the fridge overnight.DSCF0180    DSCF0181

Finally we had corn that needed to be used up, so I boiled some water and threw it into a pot. I don’t like to cook my corn to death…I basically just heat it up. 

Boil the water, stick the corn in for a minute or two…and that it is it.  It tastes so sweet and crunchy that way!  No butter needed.DSCF0164 A little wine and candle that FabTeen surprised me with to relax while I cooked… DSCF0166             

And the end result…which I thought was such a beautiful color combination!  My little point and shoot does not do the colors justice either!

Tasted really really good to boot…and the biggest bonus is I feel like I am eating like a queen and losing weight.

DSCF0183What more could a girl ask for?


Kate said...

Jewel, that looks fabulous! Can I come over for dinner? ;-) Maybe you already know this, but cooking your food in a cast iron pan puts more iron into your food - for real! I loved learning that. I made a recipe this week and I thought of you. You should give it a try one of these days.

Have a great weekend!

Karilynn said...

Beautiful.. yummy.. want the black bean burger recipe!!

jewel@fit-and-fabulous-jewel said...

Thanks Kate...yep...that is part of the reason why we switched originally to it. I was having a low iron problem and figured I could use all the hep I could get!

That recipe looks great! I am always looking for new and different ideas to keep everybody around here happy. Thanks!

Thanks to you too Karilynn..I will post the recipe...although I do a lot of throwing in of this, that, and the other...whatever I have on hand that I want to use up!