Black Bean "Burger" with Curried Yam Mash

NB: Posting may be a little less frequent while I figure out my whole blog while traveling for work schedule. I have two tasty posts today and tomorrow. Hopefully I find something nice to wear and have time for pics this weekend - I miss my vain fun outfit posts. I also did a "new" twist updo this week - will post pics next week!

This recipe came about from my first (and only) adult roommate - she was a vegetarian. We lived together right after we graduated in 2008. We rarely cooked for each other, but one day she had an extra bean burger left over, and she kindly offered it to me. Her side was a delicious mashed sweet potato mixture. The salty/sweet accommodating flavors were great for my palette! I re-created the dish with the two items below.

Black Bean "Burger" with Curried Yam Mash
Serves 4
Source: Get Cooking by Mollie Katzen (Black Bean Patty)
Source: Top Chef Cookbook (Curried Yam Mash)

2 to 3 tabelspoons olive oil
1/2 cup finely minced red or yellow onion
2 15 oz cans black beans
1 large egg, well beaten
1 cup toasted breadcrumbs
2 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons minced garlic (about 2 good-sized cloves)
Scant 1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper (or more, to taste)

2 large sweet potatoes
3 tablespoons EVOO, plus more for the pan
1 teaspoon mild curry powder
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice, or to taste

For the Curried Sweet Potato Mash:
  1. Preheat the oven to 375F. Peel the yams and cut into 1" cubes. Put the yam cubes in a large bowl and coat with the oil. Add the curry powder and salt to taste. Place in a greased baking pan, cover with aluminum foil, and bake for 50 minutes, or until softened. Remove the foil and bake for an additional 10 minutes, or until lightly browned on top.
  2. Remove the yams from the oven and transfer to a food processor.  SS: I used a potato masher. Add the butter and lemon juice and process until smooth.
For the Black Bean Patties:
  1. Place a large (10 to 12-inch) heavy skillet over medium heat. After about a minute, add 1 tablespoon of the olive oil and swirl to coat the pan. Add the onion, and cook in the center of the pan, stirring often, for 3 to 4 minutes, or until the onion softens. Set aside to cool slightly.
  2. Set a colander in the sink and pour in the beans; give them a quick rinse and allow them to drain thoroughly. Transfer the drained beans to a medium-large bowl, and use a potato masher or fork to mash them as smooth as possible. Stir in the beaten egg, breadcrumbs, cumin, garlic, salt and pepper. Scrape in the cooled onion, and mix until thoroughly combined.
  3. Wipe out the skillet with a paper towel, and then return the skillet to medium heat. After about a minute, add 1 tablespoon of the olive oil and swirl to coat the pan. Use a large spoon to scoop 4 equal mounds for the bean mixture into the hot pan, and then, with the back of the spoon, flatten and push each one into a patty about 1/2-inch thick and 3 1/2 inches in diameter. Cook, undisturbed, for about 3 minutes, or until golden brown on the bottom.
  4. Use a metal spatula to carefully loosen each burger and flip it over, adding a little more oil if the pan seems dry. (If the burger falls apart as you turn it, don't worry. Just push it back into shape and keep cooking.) Cook on the second side for about 3 minutes, or until the undersides are nicely browned. Serve immediately.
If you are looking at the curried yam mash recipe thinking that it's oddly familiar, that's because it is! I posted a recipe for a curried sweet potato mash here. I followed the same steps, and subbed sweet potatoes for yams. The curried yam mash was delicious, and the patty was ok, next time, I'll go a little lighter on the cumin.


  1. lol omg girl, i remember you eating this one in my car! lol. yes. shout-outs to the black bean burger.

  2. Thanks for the recipe, I actually tried it out a couple nights ago. Turned out really good. The bean patty was slightly dry, ill probably tweak it next time. Yams were amazing:)

  3. @geminicrickets - I Aldo think the burgers need a lil something extra, and the yams are...amazing I agree!glad it worked out for you!