Finding a nightshade free, egg free, gluten free, dairy free, and filler free recipe for anything that sticks together is near impossible. If it doesn’t have a nightshade, it has eggs. If it doesn’t have eggs it has a filler. If it doesn’t have a filler, it has some weird substitute for it. If you look for gluten free, it has dairy. If you look for dairy free, it has gluten and eggs. If you look for Vegan recipes, most have some odd ingredient that you’ve never heard of before, or has 1 star ratings. Man, can I get a break?! I mean, what’s the deal? Can’t we just make real food out of real food?
My search for a good recipe for black bean or lentil patties was on!! I wasn’t about to give up.
If you’ve ever had a food intolerance or allergy, you know just how hard it can be. I’ve detailed the difference between allergies and intolerances here. However, if you’re wondering what a nightshade is:
“Nightshades belong to a family of plants known as Solanaceae, most of which we would consider weeds (1). Solanaceae contains a variety of naturally occurring drugs known as alkaloids which protect the plant from insects, predators and disease.”
Nightshades include tomatoes, all types of peppers and the spices from the peppers, potatoes (not including sweet potatoes), eggplant, okra, goji berries, gooseberries, tomatillos, tobacco, sorrel, capsicum, ground cherries, and pepino melons. While these foods contain nutritional value, it’s the alkaloids that wreak havoc in our bodies. Not all nightshades have the same alkaloid, and each alkaloid can perform different actions in our bodies. However, the most common action these alkaloids perform is inflame the body. Now, I don’t need to go into how detrimental, terrible, awful, bad, sad, unhealthy, unwise, hurtful, or painful inflammation can be because the rest of the world has already told you that.
What’s interesting is that people actually develop a food intolerance or allergy to these nightshades and the symptoms surface in different ways in each person. Often, these are known as “Mystery Diseases” because the medical world doesn’t quite seem to know where these diseases come from. Psoriasis is a good example. It’s said to be an autoimmune disease, but it’s never been officially classified as one, and the origin of the disease still has yet to be found. From my history of psoriasis and getting rid of it, we can see that the rash was directly related to the food, and therefore inflammation.
What’s also interesting, is that people who have intolerances to nightshades, usually have an intolerance to eggs, dairy, gluten, and soy as well. People with psoriasis have also been found to have leaky gut syndrome, irritable bowels, food intolerances or allergies, liver dysfunction, imbalanced hormones, etc. And people with some or all of the above conditions usually also suffer from migraines, chest pain, chronic fatigue syndrome, adrenal fatigue, weight gain, hot flashes, thyroid issues, and sometimes even type II diabetes. So really, these “Mystery Diseases” could be said to be all related to food. Makes sense, right? Especially since before 1950 (ish) food was thought of as medicine, and was to be used to help make you feel better, not necessarily something to just indulge ourselves with.
Cool story, Hansel…
Now, back to patties!
In my searching, I happened upon a recipe that was egg free, gluten free, dairy free, and filler free. Alas, it had nightshades; the dreaded cayenne pepper and paprika seasonings that plague so many American style meals. But not to fear, I decided to alter the recipe and hoped the flavor wouldn’t be sacrificed. After all, it was a just a few spices.
The recipe that I’d chosen had mentioned to essentially fry the patties like you would in falafel, but this was an epic fail. Frying the patties made them fall apart. This definitely could have gone down in the books as a Pinterest fail. However, I noticed one of the latter patties I had put on the pan hadn’t fallen apart, and there was also very little oil left in the pan. I decided to continue cooking the rest of the patties, but with minimal oil (which was also healthier, so I couldn’t complain).
To my great joy, the patties didn’t fall apart! No Pinterest fail for me. So, instead of frying in a layer of oil, they were simply browned and made crispy on each side. Voila! Delicious, dairy free, gluten free, animal free, egg free, nightshade free, vegan Black Bean Patties.
Wow, that’s a mouthful.
Quick note: The recipe calls for plain greek yogurt in the sauce. This is an optional ingredient and can be eliminated or substituted with a vegan yogurt or cheese sauce. Also, an egg can be substituted for the ground flaxseed. Adding an egg may require a bit more cook time for each patty.
Have a great recipe? We’d love to hear from you! Message us or comment below.
That’s all for now, folks.
-The Lewis Corner