I can be fairly competitive. I have proven this time and time again by getting
frustrated and behaving like a child when I lose at Wii Frisbee Golf or get trounced
in a game of Scrabble. Not that I always lose; I’ve been on a Scrabble winning streak
against my brother, and since he’s my big brother, I’m allowed a little extra gloating.
Healthy competition is good thing: It’s rewarding to come out on top from time to
time, and humbling to be reminded that even when you don’t come in first, life goes
on. You pick yourself up and try harder next time.
So in the spirit of a little healthy competition, I pitted two versions of veggie burger sliders against one another: Last week I made my own version, and this week Vegetarian Times’ Black Bean Edamame Sliders. The verdict? Well, just like an elementary school field day, everybody wins! There were great things to be said for each of these burgers. My burger is a better “classic” burger, whereas the VT burger, spiced with chipotle and zesty cilantro, and coupled with the sweetness of barbecue sauce, is much more creative and interesting on the palette. My burger holds together better, whereas the VT burger squishes out the sides of the bun more like a sloppy joe. My burger can handle a wider variety of toppings for individual tastes. The VT burger is delicious, but pretty specific – you get what you get. Both were fairly simple to make, cute as little buttons, and gobbled up without complaint.
So no one has to push all the Scrabble pieces onto the floor or throw the Wii remote across the room. Vegetarian Times and I can hug and smile and skip off into the sunset with our “participant” ribbons waving in the breeze. Check out the VT website or subscribe to the magazine for more great veggie recipes.
1 cup frozen shelled edamame
1 clove garlic
1 ½ cups cooked black beans or 1 15oz can black beans rinsed and drained
1 chipotle chile in adobo sauce, drained and minced (I used ½ Tbsp chipotle powder)
¼ cup coarsely chopped cilantro
¾ cup plus 1 Tbsp. prepared fat-free barbecue sauce
¼ tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp olive oil
12 small whole wheat dinner rolls, split like buns
4 oz sharp cheddar cheese cut into 12 slices
Cook and drain the edamame according to package directions. Add the garlic to the food processor and pulse until minced. Add the black beans, edamame, cilantro, 1 Tbsp. barbecue sauce, salt, spices and chile to the food processor and and mix until a coarse paste has formed. In a saucepan over medium low heat, heat the oil. Add the bean mixture and stir occasionally until mixture is heated through. Assemble burgers by spreading barbecue sauce on ½ of each bun and topping with cheese, bean mixture and remaining bun.