Channeling Martha Stewart: Spicy Black-Bean Cakes

Apparently, I am on a Martha Stewart kick because this is the second time this week that I have used one of her recipes. The first time I was the sole benefactor, but this time I decided to share the love with my fellow Junior Leaguers at our holiday party.

I signed up to bring an appetizer and I wanted one that was healthy and unique. For some reason, an appetizer that contained sweet potatoes was appealing to me. I wavered between thoughts of wontons stuffed with sweet potato and these cakes. Once I realized I didn’t have any wonton wrappers in my freezer, my mind focused in on the black bean cake recipes.

The recipe looks very simple to execute, but it takes time. If you make it, I would advise you to do what I did and that is to prep the night before you want to eat them.  It took me a little over an hour to grate, mash, and saute the various ingredients.   However, the next day after work, I was able to finish them in time to make it to our holiday party on time. Plus, because the ingredients had more time to marinate, it gave the cakes a greater depth of flavor.

More importantly, my fellow Junior Leaguers loved them. By the time I went home, I only had a few left. I think the jalepeno and lime sour cream gave them an added kick. One word: Outstanding!!!

Why yes, I was lazy. I mixed the jalepeno and lime in the sour cream container.

 Here’s a close up of the some of the cakes on the baking sheet:

Here’s the recipe:


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 scallions, thinly sliced
  • 6 garlic cloves, pressed
  • 1 to 2 jalapeno chiles, finely chopped (ribs and seeds removed for less heat, if desired)
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 2 cans (15.5 ounces each) black beans, drained and rinsed
  • Coarse salt and ground pepper
  • 1 large sweet potato, peeled and coarsely grated (2 cups)
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup plain dried breadcrumbs (I used panko crumbs)
  • Lime Sour Cream (see recipe, below)


  1. Heat broiler. In a small skillet over medium heat, warm 1 tablespoon olive oil. Cook scallions until softened, 1 minute. Add garlic, jalapeno, and cumin; cook until fragrant, 30 seconds. Transfer to a large bowl.
  2. Add beans to bowl; mash with a fork or a potato masher, leaving about 1/4 of the beans whole. Season generously with salt and pepper. Fold in sweet potato, egg, and breadcrumbs. Divide into 8 balls of equal size; flatten into patties.
  3. Brush a baking sheet with remaining tablespoon oil; place patties on sheet, 1/2 inch apart. Broil 4 inches from heat until golden brown, 8 to 10 minutes. With a thin metal spatula, carefully turn cakes. Broil until crisp, 2 to 3 minutes more. Serve with Lime Sour Cream.
  4. For the Lime Sour Cream: In a small bowl, combine 1/2 cup reduced-fat sour cream with 2 teaspoons fresh lime juice and 1 small minced jalapeno chile (ribs and seeds removed for less heat, if desired) season with coarse salt.

Cook’s Note

To grate the potatoes with a box grater (instead of food processor, which I did because I don’t have a food processor yet), use the large holes and work over a bowl.

This entry was posted in martha stewart eat your heart out, recipes, vegetarian and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Channeling Martha Stewart: Spicy Black-Bean Cakes

  1. I did something fairly similar not too long ago. I like a bit of Martha Stewart and my version tasted good, so these must too 😀

  2. brandnewphd says:

    Nice! which recipe did you use? Was it your own?

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