The Good Food Collective

Black Bean Cakes with Scapes & Chard


  • 1 lb dry black beans (any type of bean works) – or use 3 cans of canned beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 cups fresh bread crumbs
  • 6 garlic scapes.
  • 5-6 large stalks of swiss chard
  • 2 eggs
  • 2t salt
  • 1t fresh black pepper


Preparing the Beans: If you use canned, skip this step. Rinse dry beans and pick out any bad ones. Cover with 1” of water and put into the fridge overnight. (This rehydrates the beans and allows them to be cooked properly.) In the am, drain and rinse the beans. Pour the beans into a Crockpot, cover with fresh water and 1t of salt and cook on high for 2-3 hours. (Alternatively, pour into a stockpot, cover with fresh water & 1t of salt and simmer for 1-2 hours until soft but not mushy.) Drain the beans. When cool, dump into a large bowl. To make fresh breadcrumbs, rip 3-4 pieces of good bread into chunks then whirr in a food processor until crumb texture. (I used a chunk of a loaf of Little Bakery’s sourdough bread.) Dump breadcrumbs into the bowl on top of the beans. Clean and shake dry the scapes and the chard. Cut the scapes into 1-2” chunks and process in the processor until minced. Add the scapes to the bowl with the breadcrumbs and beans. Cut the thick stalks off the chard leaves. Process the stalks until roughly chopped, and then add to the large bowl. Repeat with the leaves. Toss in the 2t salt and 1t pepper, mix everything with a large spoon until well incorporated. Break in two eggs, and then mix with clean hands until a lovely, delicious mush. :-) Fry in a light sheen of oil until darker than you think is a good idea (trust me, it’s the chard charring and will be delicious!), then flip and continue on the other side. Serve warm or at room temperature. (Freezes well, reheat for 10-15 minutes in a 325 degree oven.) This recipe makes anywhere from 12 – 24 cakes, depending on the size. Serve them with yogurt mixed with mint, sour cream and salsa, on a roll with other roasted vegetables, chopped and layered into lasagna… anywhere a delicious; protein rich, garlicky whollop is welcome! Note: Beans + Eggs + Breadcrumbs lend themselves as a palette for *MANY* flavors… Minced tomatoes + parsley + parmesan, Raisins + Pine nuts + Olives, Cumin + roasted peppers + chives… On and on… Take advantage of their flexibility when you have market share leftovers and are perplexed!