Greens and Beans Palettes

Greens and Beans Palettes
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greens and beans palettes
These are NOT burgers, but palettes!

Why in the world would someone want to remake a famous movie? Think about that for a minute, then consider a remake of your favorite classic movie. For us, we might think about Rear Window, by Alfred Hitchcock. Even if someone were to remake it, and even if it were great, some people would still complain (probably us), and say that it wasn’t the same as the original. And they’d be right. So, why would someone try to remake a classic? Don’t worry, we’re getting to our main topic soon.

That’s kind of how we feel about those fake meat products. Why make something that pretends to taste like meat, when you could do something different?

That’s why we renamed this particular dish. It was originally Greens and Beans Burgers, but why call them burgers? They’re not. They won’t fool anyone into thinking that they’re burgers. Instead, think of them as palettes — like an artist’s palette — where you can try mixing flavors and spices and just happen to eat them on some sort of bread product. Now, you can have super-spicy harissa palettes, or perhaps green olive palettes, or sweet corn and pepper palettes, or even shiitake and soy palettes. See, rather than being a substitute for a hamburger, these are a way to show off the endless possibilities of flavors limited only by your creativity. Much better, right?

We started out with the basic recipe provided by Jessica Mechant in Seriously Delish, figuring that if it worked out alright, we could then use it as our palette.

Greens and Beans Palettes

Yield: Six 4-inch patties

Greens and Beans Palettes


  • 3-5 Tbs olive oil, divided
  • 3 ounces fresh greens, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2 Tbs all-purpose flour
  • 1 egg
  • 1 Tbs grated Parmesan cheese
  • 2 Tbs finely minced onion
  • 1/4 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper

Abbreviated Instructions

Heat a tablespoon of the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add garlic and greens, and cook, stirring often, until wilted, about 5 minutes. Turn off heat.

In the bowl of a food processor, combine cooked greens and garlic, beans, flour, egg, cheese, onion, salt, and pepper. Pulse several times until coarsely chopped.

Heat remaining oil in the large skillet over medium heat. Shape patties from the mix and fry 5 minutes per side, or until browned and crispy.

Ingredient discussion:

mise en place
These palettes go together very quickly, so prep everything beforehand.

Again, think of this as a palette, and change the flavors to your liking. Just make sure to keep the flour, egg, and beans, since those are what make up your palette and hold it all together. Oh, sure, you can swap out some of the beans, maybe for rice, or something else, and it should still work. Try changing it up, and, when you find something really good, let us know.

Procedure in detail:

frying greens
Fry the greens until wilted and a bit tender. That way, they get chopped up in the processor.

Cook greens. Raw, some greens might be too tough to work well, but, with a little cooking, even the toughest greens (we used kale) should work nicely. Heat about a tablespoon of oil in a large skillet (you’ll use this skillet for cooking the palettes later) over medium-high heat. Add garlic and greens and cook until wilted, about 5 minutes. Turn off heat.

making greens and beans palettes
Once the greens are fried, everything, except the oil gets pulsed in a food processor.
greens and beans
Do not purée the mixture; it should be a bit chunky.

Process. Put everything except the oil into the bowl of a food processor and pulse it a few times so the mixture is coarsely chopped. Don’t you love this recipe already? We’re five minutes in and it’s almost done!

greens and beans palettes
Only a few minutes of frying makes these nice and brown and crispy on the outside.

Fry Palettes. Add the oil to the skillet and turn the heat to medium. When hot, shape patties and fry for five minutes on a side, or until browned and crispy. We found that we could just scoop out some of the mixture and place it in the pan, pushing it down to form a patty, so that was really easy, too.

Serve. We had ours on some homemade bread, but you could serve these any way you want. Make them small, call them fritters.

We had these for dinner, and we’ll say that they are really easy, and pretty good. As they stand, they’re somewhat bland, but, since we’re thinking palette for flavors, that’s a good thing, because we did have to add a bit more salt at a minimum. We liked the fact that the outside became nice and crispy, while the inside remained tender. We think that these are good enough that they’ll stand up against those frozen bean burgers that you can buy at the store (we don’t, since we try — sometimes, but not often, we succumb to the convenience food — to scratch out all our meals), but note that they’re too soft to cook on a grill. We think they’d just break apart and fall through. Four stars.

Worth the trouble?

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