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Cilantro Black Bean Burgers over Polenta Cakes [Vegan]

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The general get-up of this recipe seems complex, but other than cobbling the polenta cakes, the rest of the meal comes together quite quickly. The black beans added a deep and smoky character to these burgers, making for a very satisfying meal.

Cilantro Black Bean Burgers over Polenta Cakes [Vegan]

This Recipe is :

Dairy Free Vegan



Cook Time



For the Polenta Base:

  • 3 cups of water
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup polenta (cornmeal)
  • Oil for shallow frying

For the Black Bean Burgers:

  • 1 and 1/2 cups of cooked black beans
  • 1 medium sized red onion, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped mushrooms
  • 1 tablespoon freshly chopped jalapeño(one jalapeño pepper)
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  • 2 tablespoons chickpea flour
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • Guacamole, sliced red onions (to serve)


  1. Bring the water, salt and black pepper to a boil and the polenta and cook for about 12 to 15 minutes, until the polenta has a thick porridge like consistency. Pour the polenta on to a flat greased surface spreading to about 1/2 an inch thickness and let it cool for about 30 minutes, while you work on the black bean burgers
  2. Using a round cutter cut into small 3 inch circles.
  3. Heat the oil for shallow frying and add the polenta cakes and cook for about 2 to 3 minutes until golden on both sides.
    Let it rest.
  4. Mash the black beans and mix with the red onion, chopped mushrooms, jalapeno, lime juice, ground cumin, smoked paprika, salt and chopped cilantro. Add in the chickpea flour. Shape into small burgers to match the size of the polenta cakes or slider buns.
  5. Place in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes.
  6. Heat the olive oil on a flat skillet, add the burgers in a single layer and cook for about 3 to 4 minutes on each side.
  7. To serve and assemble, place a burger over a polenta cake. To with a little guacamole and sliced red onions.





Rinku Bhattacharya is a creative Indian cooking teacher and writer, who began teaching Indian cooking almost a decade ago, to share the culture and home flavors of her native India.  Passionate about a conscious lifestyle and seasonal living, she shares her recipes and experiences are chronicled on her blog Spice Chronicles. This concept has translated to two cookbooks. The first is a part memoir, part narrative-style cookbook, "The Bengali Five Spice Chronicles," which was the winner of the 2013 Gourmand Awards for Best Indian Cuisine cookbook. In her second cookbook -- "Spices and Seasons, Simple, Sustainable Indian Flavors" -- Rinku offers recipes inspired by the local bounty of the Hudson Valley. The book also offers tips and ideas on creating a green kitchen and reducing your food footprint!



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