delicious vegetarian dill patties with petite golden lentils & quinoa

at the market a few days ago i came across a nice display of petite golden lentils that i had never seen (or tasted) before. i decided to bring some home and give them a try, but when i looked them up i found very few recipes (none too appetizing) that include these tiny oval lentils. i decided to start by boiling them, and assumed they’d taste more like the red lentils i typically use for making dal (see recipe). to my surprise, the aroma that took over my kitchen as the lentils slowly cooked was similar to that of the yellow split peas we often use in persian cooking. despite their small size, these golden lentils turned out to be quite hearty and took a good 20-25 minutes to cook (just tender). once they had cooked and i had the opportunity to taste them (they taste like a milder version of yellow split peas), i knew they would work really well in vegetarian cutlets (or patties). since i love quinoa, AND because it’s so good for you, it became a part of the recipe along with lots of dill (i’d found the freshest looking organic dill at the market). the resulting patties were deliciously healthy, crispy, and and really satisfying. i’m pretty sure the rest of the golden lentils will be used to make more patties soon.
ingredients for delicious lentil-quinoa-dill {gluten free} patties (about 12-16):
  •  3/4 to 1 cups petite yellow golden lentils (or small brown lentils or yellow split peas )-cooked until tender
  • 1/2 cup quinoa-cooked
  • 1 large shallot, very finely minced
  • 1/4 cup sliced green onions (thinly sliced)
  • 1 large bunch fresh chopped dill (about 1/4 to 1/2 cup)
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped flat leaf parsley
  • 1-2 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper (or red pepper flakes)-optional for spicy
  • sea salt & freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 2-3 tbs virgin & unrefined coconut oil (for frying)
  • 2 whole organic eggs, 1 additional egg white (or 3 organic eggs)
  • 1-2 tbs chick pea flour (or any flour of choice can be substituted)

 1. in a bowl combine all the ingredients (except for the coconut oil) and mix well making sure all the herbs and spices are equally distributed.

2. heat the oil in a frying pan-then make little balls of the mixture in the palm of you hands (between a golf ball and a tennis ball size). place the balls in the pan and gently press on them with a spatula to flatten and form them into patties.

3. fry the patties on medium/low heat until cooked and golden brow on each side-about 3-5 minutes. take care in flipping the patties-if they are not holding together, you may need to add one more egg (or egg white) or a tbs or two more of the chick pea flour.

4. remove the cooked patties from the pan and allow them to drain on a paper towel for just a minute or two before serving. enjoy warm or at room temperature. 
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vegetarian quinoa and lentil patties or “cutlets”

vegetarian quinoa and lentil patties

growing up, when my mom asked us what we’d like to eat for dinner, i’d often request “kotlet” -or the persian version of a meat and potato cutlet flavored with onions, turmeric, cinnamon, and parsley without a moment’s hesitation. the “kotlet” is almost tastier cold or at room temperature than hot, and travels well-which is probably why i always associate it with traveling and the family road trips we used to take (bringing along delicious kotlet sandwiches wrapped in flatbread with crunchy dill pickles, chopped parsley, and tomato slices). here, i’ve taken the traditional persian cutlets ( see kotlet recipe ) and given them a lighter vegetarian twist. you can also coat these in breadcrumbs for added crunch, but i didn’t this time, and as you can see, they turned out beautifully. to make these delicious healthy “cutlets” (or burgers) you will need:

  • 1 cup small green lentils
  • 1 cup mung beans
  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 3 large organic eggs
  • 1/2 yellow onion
  • 1 small bunch flat leaf parsley
  • 1 small bunch basil
  • 1 small bunch chives
  • 1/2 cup garbanzo bean (or organic whole wheat) flour
  • sea salt and pepper to taste
  • 2-3 tsps turmeric
  • 1-2 tsps cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp organic unrefined coconut oil
quinoa patties or cutlets

1. cook the mung beans and lentils together in about 3 cups salted water until tender, drain, set aside (this also freezes well for later use).
2. cook quinoa in about 1 and 1/4 to 1/2 cups of water for about 15 minutes (should have none or very little liquid left), drain and set aside.
3. finely chop the herbs, then finely cube the 1/2 onion. fry the onion with 1-2 tsp of coconut oil and the turmeric until tender, and let it cool.
4. combine all of the above (in a bowl), including the sea salt & pepper (keep in mind the beans and quinoa were salted), cinnamon, three large organic eggs, chickpea (garbanzo bean) flour, and mix well, creating a “paste”.  5. fry the patties by spooning spoonfuls of the “paste” on to a skillet with a tbs of coconut oil, and slightly flattening the top with the back of your spoon and frying about 2-3 minutes on each side (medium heat). you can also use your hands to make little balls that you flatten between your palms. if you want to serve the patties in buns use a larger spoon and use more paste to make a bigger patty. i served them with basil and tomato slices and a nice salad on the side-it was a good for you delicious meal!

{here is the link to my post on traditional beef & potato kotlet}

vegetarian cutlets or kotlet
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