Butternut Squash and Kidney Bean Burgers

I don’t know about you, but after the long Christmas break (and my birthday) I was desperate for some fresh home-cooked meals with lots of veg! D and I were both off work for the whole Christmas period which just meant a contstant stream of eating out, drinks with friends and family dinners – with plenty of grazing on christmas goodies along the way.

As fun as it all was at the time (I mean, who doesn’t love a slice of pork pie slathered in stilton?!), suddenly my waist band is feeling a little tight and I think it’s time to start thinking about what I eat a little bit more carefully!

Luckily, thanks to the guys over at Able and Cole I now have a fridge full of fresh organically grown veg. If you haven’t tried a fruit/veg delivery before I would absolutely recommend it – not only does it taste better but I find we are saving more money because we have to go food shopping less (I just make do with the leftovers in the fridge until the next delivery arrives).

But I still need to make food which is substantial enough for D, and doesn’t feel like ‘diet food’. That’s why these veggie burgers are so good – he can have them in a burger bun, or flat wrap, and I can have them in lettuce leaves. It really is a flexible dish – add as many toppings as you like. We went for chill sauce and mayo, with jalapenos and salad, but I think avocado would be a really good addition too if you want to bulk it out a bit – and lots of vitamins and good oils in there too.

Microwaving the butternut squash makes this a really simple, healthy, mid-week recipe. If you don’t have a microwave then I would just roast the squash in chunks for about 40mins, until it is soft and mashable. Adding the crushed tortilla chips may seem a bit odd – but it meant that the burgers had a nice crisp to them and helped them to hold their shape. It also gave them a slightly Mexican taste, which with the added toppings ,worked really well.

This made 6 normal size burgers, but I found they were quite slow to cook so I have suggested making 12 mini burgers instead. If you did want to make normal size burgers just bear in mind the additional time it may need. Alternatively, if you skip the ‘chilling’ stage they would cook quicker but may not hold their shape as well.

Apologies for the lack of photos, but it was the first day back to work and I was just so hungry!

Ingredients

– 600g butternut squash

– 1 tin kidney beans

1 tsp chilli flakes

– 2 cloves of garlic

Several handfuls of crushed tortilla chips

– Vegetable oil

– Burger buns and toppings of your choice

1. Cut the butternut squash into equal chunks (don’t worry about removing the skin) and place in covered microwave proof bowl. Microwave on high for 10 minutes

2. Meanwhile blitz the kidney beans, chilli flakes and garlic cloves in a food processor until they form a smooth paste

3. After the butternut squash has cooked, remove it from the microwave and allow to cool slightly

4. Scoop the butternut squash flesh away from its skin, and add to the bean mixture

5. Mix in a handful of crushed tortilla chips – this will help it bind. Keep adding chips until you think the mixture will hold its shape

6. Using slightly wet hands (to avoid the mixture sticking) mould into twelve mini burger shapes

7. Place on a non-stick baking tray and leave to chill in the fridge for 10 mins

8. Pre-heat grill

9. Remove burgers from the fridge and place under the grill. Cook on each side for at least 5mins. Just make sure to keep an eye on them so they don’t burn

10. Once they are nice and crisp on both sides remove from the grill

11. Build your burgers and enjoy