Thursday, October 4, 2012

A Guest For Dinner

A Fabulous guest blog by my friend Amanda ... she cooked up a storm for my Vegan brood and it was so AMAZING I was compelled to SHARE .. What's for dinner? How about a Guest Dish?

Amanda & I enjoying a Coastal Sunset! 

I'm fortunate to be staying for a week on the coast with Lisa and her family, who have graciously welcomed me into their home. Not being much of meat-consumer myself and all about a healthy lifestyle, I was excited to experience a 'week in the life' of a vegan household. I made these sweet potato burgers for us for dinner one night, which thanks to the sweet potatoes (or yams as they're known in the US) and black beans are packed with nutrients, and couldn't be easier to prepare. They've even won over my most hard-core dinner guests that were skeptical as to how decent a "burger" without any meat could be. I love showing them that being "crunchy granola" isn't all about the stereotyped days full of salads and slamming wheat grass shots.

These burgers can be made days ahead and kept in the refrigerator until you're ready to serve them. I actually like making them a day before serving to allow the patties to firm up and the flavor to develop. 
I always change it up depending on what's in my fridge and pantry, but here's the basic recipe:

  • Peel and cube two sweet potatoes, tossing them lightly in olive oil or coconut oil and salt and pepper. Roast in a 400 degree oven until soft, approx. 30 minutes. Turn over half way through. Don't worry if the edges get a little brown. 
  • Rinse and drain one can of black beans and let dry. (I like to use tinned beans for this kind of recipe vs. dried, as it's quicker and easier. If you are using dried, prepare them carefully ahead of time as the package directs and make sure that they're nice and soft.)
  • Saute one large onion and 3-4 minced garlic cloves in a little oil, and cook until the onions are translucent. 
  • In a large bowl, mash together the cooked sweet potato, black beans and onion mixture until the sweet potatoes are well mashed. 
  • Add whatever additional seasoning you'd like - I add turmeric to as many dishes as I can for the extra health benefits so I usually add it into this, as well as some garam marsala. 
  • Form into patties approximately 1" thick, and coat in panko crumbs. (Panko crumbs can be found in the bread crumbs aisle and come plain or seasoned.) Place on a waxed-paper lined baking sheet and refrigerate until needed. 
  • When ready to serve, cook for 3-4 minutes per side in a lightly oiled pan over medium heat until panko is lightly browned and they're warmed through. 
  • Serve with whole wheat thin pita-style buns, hummus, tomatoes, avocado, sauteed mushrooms, sprouts or anything else you feel would go well. 
Other additions you could add if they're on hand:
- sauteed spinach, cooked quinoa, cooked brown rice, sunflowers seeds, chia/hemp/flax seeds... the variations are endless!

*Amanda Flude


  1. Yummo!! I bought a box of Panko crumbs at Costco and have been at a loss until now for what to do with them! Definitely will try this, hopefully Colin is a good sport... haha!

  2. YUMMMMMYYY! Thank you for the recipe, I devoured the one you made me the other night. So good, Miss Amanda. :)

  3. Colin will LOVE them. SOOOOO Good and easy to make. Best of all they are super healthy. XXO