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Gluten-Free Panko-Crusted Black Bean and Sweet Potato Burgers  

Serves 8


    Gluten-Free Panko-Crusted Black Bean and Sweet Potato Burgers  

    These burgers have an addictively crispy outside and are soft and chewy inside, with plenty of protein from cooked black beans. You can use commercial gluten-free panko or bread crumbs or make your own by grinding a few pieces of bread in a food processor. You can also replace panko with bought or homemade almond meal. To make it yourself, simply grind whole peeled almonds or almond slivers to a coarse powder.


    This makes a big batch of burgers, so freeze any ungrilled patties on plates or baking sheets so they don’t stick together and then transfer them to freezer-safe containers. To cook from frozen,  bake for 30 minutes at 375 F (190 C) then broil for a few minutes on each side to crisp exterior.


    Gluten-Free Panko-Crusted Black Bean and Sweet Potato Burgers  


    • 2  sweet potatoes (to make 2 cups/500 mL mashed potatoes)
    • 3 cups (750 mL) cooked black beans, or 2 - 14 oz (398 mL) cans, drained and rinsed
    • 1/2 cup (125 mL) finely diced green onions
    • 3 Tbsp (45 mL) gluten-free panko, divided
    • 1 tsp (5 mL) grated lime or lemon zest
    • 1 Tbsp (15 mL) ground cumin
    • 1 Tbsp (15 mL) smoked paprika
    • 3/4 tsp (4 mL) salt, divided
    • 1/2 tsp (2 mL) black pepper, divided
    • 8 whole grain or gluten-free buns (optional)


    Per serving:

    • calories128
    • protein7g
    • fat1g
      • saturated fat0g
      • trans fat0g
    • carbohydrates28g
      • sugars2g
      • fibre5g
    • sodium246mg



    Place whole, unpeeled sweet potatoes on baking sheet and roast in 415 F (210 C) oven for 30 minutes, or until soft, slightly deflated, and oozing caramelized sugars.


    Cut sweet potatoes open in several places to help them cool, then peel and place in large bowl with beans, green onion, 1 Tbsp (15 mL) panko, lime zest, cumin, smoked paprika, 1/4 tsp (1 mL) salt, and 1/4 tsp (1 mL) black pepper. Mash to combine. Sweet potatoes should be fairly smooth with some of the beans remaining whole to create a chewy texture. Use food processor if you prefer a smoother texture.


    On small plate or in shallow bowl, combine remaining 2 Tbsp (30 mL) panko with remaining 1/2 tsp (2 mL) salt and 1/4 tsp (1 mL) pepper.


    Shape batter into 8 patties and coat in panko mixture. Add a little more panko crumbs if necessary. Preheat broiler and lightly grease baking sheet. Place rack in centre of oven. Place patties on prepared baking sheet and broil in centre of oven for about 8 minutes, then flip and broil for 5 minutes more, or until toasted and crispy.


    Serve on buns, if using, with your choice of toppings such as lettuce, onion, ketchup, mustard, or salsa.



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    Mussels with Tomato, Saffron, and Fennel

    B12-rich mussels are a very good and economical source of protein and iron. Steamed mussels are a classic way to enjoy seafood—and so is this rich, aromatic broth of tomato, fennel, and saffron. Be sure to allow saffron to fully infuse to get the full flavour benefit, and finish off the dish with the fragrant fennel fronds. Sustainability status Farmed mussels are considered highly sustainable due to their low impacts on the environment. They are easy to harvest, require no fertilizer or fresh water, and don’t need to be fed externally, as they get all their nutritional requirements from their marine environment. Mussel prep Selection: Look for mussels with shiny, tightly closed shells that smell of the sea. If shells are slightly open, give them a tap. Live mussels will close immediately. Storage: Keep mussels in the fridge in a shallow pan laid on top of ice. Keep them out of water and cover with a damp cloth. Ideally, consume on the day you buy them, but within two days. They need to breathe, so never keep them in a sealed plastic bag. Cleanup: In addition to being sustainable, farmed mussels tend to require less cleaning than wild mussels. Most of the fibrous “beards” that mussels use to grip solid surfaces will have been removed before sale. But if a few remain, they’re easily dispatched: grasp the beard with your thumb and forefinger and pull it toward the hinge of the mussel and give it a tug. Afterward, give mussels a quick rinse and scrub away any areas of mud or seaweed, which, with farmed mussels, will require minimal work.