Monday, 21 March 2011

Harissa Bean Burger

This 'Harissa Bean Burger' is the kind of burger you eat in your own company, or in the company of good friends and most trusted of family members, as you and they are not going to look pretty after biting into these.
Although, nice and crispy on the outside, this was one messy mushy beany burger. As I chomped on my burger bun, the spicy beany filling was squirting out from all directions. Yes, you need a big plate or a rather large napkin, otherwise you will have a stained top for the rest of the day. I served these with a little dollop of homemade yellow chilli jam.
I have made harissa in the past, but for this recipe I used a tube of harissa that's been in my fridge for goodness knows how long. I don’t know if its lost its spice heat or what, but it was not particularly strong in flavour.

Priya of Now Serving is hosting the Fast Food Not Fat Food Event this month. Priya gently promped me to submit this healthy looking bean burger to the event. The event is about presenting a healthier version of our favourite fast foods. I had not thought of it, but actually this bean burger is healthy. Not just because its full of beans that are low in fat and high in fibre. But also because they are packed with nutrients in the form of minerals, protein and vitamins. Also in its favour, this bean burger is shallow fried.
Harissa Bean Burgers
Makes 10 - 14
110g black-eyed beans
110g green or brown lentils
2 tablespoons olive oil plus extra for shallow frying
1 medium red onion, finely chopped
1 medium carrot, finely chopped
1 red pepper, de-seeded and finely chopped
1 red chilli, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, chopped
2 – 3 tablespoon harissa paste
1 tablespoon fresh coriander, minced
2 tablespoons plain flour
salt and freshly milled black pepper
Soak the black-eyed beans overnight in cold water. The other lentils won't need soaking.
To make the burgers
Once the soaking is done, drain the black-eyed beans. In a medium-sized saucepan, add the drained beans and the lentils, then pour in 1 pint (570 ml) water, then bring everything up to a gentle simmer and let them cook for about 40-45 minutes, or until the beans are completely soft. Drain and mash them.
In a large frying pan, add 2 tablespoon of olive oil, then heat it over a medium heat and add the onion, carrot, pepper, chilli and garlic. Sauté them all together for about 6 minutes until all the vegetables are soft.
After that mix all the vegetables into the mashed bean and lentil mixture, add the harissa paste, coriander and season to taste. Then dampen your hands and form the mixture into 10 - 14 round cakes. Then place them on a lightly oiled tray, cover with clingfilm and keep them in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour before cooking.
When you're ready to serve the bean burgers, coat them lightly with flour, then heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil. When the oil is hot, reduce the heat to medium and fry the bean burgers for 3 minutes on each side until they are crisp and golden, adding more oil to the pan if necessary.
Drain them on kitchen paper and serve immediately. Recipe adapted from Delia Smith Vegetarian Collection.


  1. These sound good, and even better for the squirtiness.

  2. please send this to my Fast Food NOT Fat Food event - It would be a perfect entry

  3. Thanks Kath.

    As requested - recipe linked.
    Sorry that I was not able to link your logo though, as my entry had already gone on.
    Kind wishes

  4. So moreish and perfect.
    This spicy Harrissa burger will bring the taste of Morocco to our homes ♥

  5. Ooooh, these look wonderful!! I love harissa, and z'chug, and pretty much every red pepper paste 'round the world... :-) So wonderful with the mellow, hearty beans!

  6. Thanks Ana,
    A little bit of Morocco at home is good!

    Thank you Astra.
    I've yet to make 'zchug.

    Thanks Alessandra.

  7. Looks divine, and I LOVE SQUIRTY!! Haha.

    Sue xx

  8. Thanks Sue,
    Keep the hanky close to wipe your face :)

  9. I was interested to see you use harissa paste from a tube. I buy mine in a small jar but rarely use half of it before it goes mouldy. I've considered freezing it but never got round to doing so. A tube sounds like the solution.

  10. I've never heard of Harissa before... I'll have to look for some next time I'm grocery shopping! This burger sounds delicious.

  11. Just Gai,
    I've bought harissa in a small jar too and never been able to use it all, and it was my reason for picking up the tube.

    Thanks Ali.
    Just inc ase you can't find it, If you follow my harissa link on the blog, I've also made it from scratch.

  12. Mmm, these sound good, I love harissa:) Oh look - it's half past eleven, just about time to make some for lunch - but I'll haver to use a tin of beans!

  13. Hi Christine,
    Lovely to hear from you.
    A tin of beans will work fine.
    Hope you enjoy.

  14. Now you KNOW this is right up my alley. Printed and bookmarked.

  15. Thanks Monica.
    Just remember, its squishy factor.

  16. I made this recipe this afternoon and absolutely loved it. Had to make a few changes based on what I had in the house: frozen, thawed and well-patted green pepper, jalapeno pepper, regular onion, and I also added a bit of flour as a binder due to a shortage of time to chill the mixture. Do coat the burgers and don't skimp on the oil when frying. I wonder how this recipe would translate to small cocktail sized non-meatballs - you might need to add a certain amount of binder (more than the 1 Tbsp that I added) although perhaps if the mixture was cold it might not require it. Thanks mangocheeks, scrumptious recipe.

  17. Thank you so much Judith.
    I like how the rcipe changes from one home cook to another. Your version with jalapeno peppers sounds delciious.

  18. I love agood & tasty spiced up bean & veggie burger & yours rocks!!

    Really tasty & lovely burgers!

  19. Sophie,
    Thank you - liking the sound of rocks!


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