BBQ’d Ribs and Black Bean Burgers

What is a mixed couple to do on July 4th — the biggest grilling holiday of the year? BBQ’d ribs and shrimp, grilled salmon burgers, spicy black bean burgers and chipotle corn salad. In other words, something for everyone.

While The Professor was tending to the grill for hours on end, I mixed up a lemon-herb marinade for the shrimp, made a spicy corn salad, and tested my Aunt Karen’s recipe for black bean burgers.

The corn salad suffered from bad corn, alas. (The Cook won’t be suckered by “Six ears for $2” signs any more.) But the black bean burgers were a success! They had a nice flavor and weren’t too dry or mushy. Of course, you can’t take my word for it. So I’ll cook them up for The Professor soon. Just not on a night when they’d be going head to head with ribs!

Karen’s Black Bean Burgers

2 cans black beans, rinsed and drained
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
1 cup shredded cheese (I used mozzarella)
About 1/4 cup panko or whole wheat bread crumbs
2 tsp cumin
1 tsp dried oregano
1/2 medium jalapeño pepper finely chopped (I used 2 tsp adobo sauce)
2 large egg whites or 1 large egg

half onion, finely diced

3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
Saute onions and garlic for a few minutes
Place beans in a bowl and mash with a fork. Stir in the remaining ingredients. Adjust the amount of panko so you can make a patty that isn’t too sticky.

Shape into 6 patties and place on baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Coat the tops with cooking spray and bake in 375 degree oven for about 20 minutes, carefully turning once.

My Aunt Karen serves them with or without a bun with either mango salsa or for more of a hamburger taste with ketchup, mayo, tomato and pickle. But her favorite is on a good bun with blue cheese, cole slaw and a good tomato.

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