Lentil Bites

Saturday, 17 October 2009

I'm slowly getting better and decidedly less snotty. My nose has stopped glowing red in the night. I've stopped needed afternoon naps (much to my dismay).

I found this recipe on The Hungry Tiger while looking for something different to go in lunch boxes. I get bored with sandwiches and cold pasta salad just doesn't do it for me. I also make my mum's lunches sometime and she's much fussier than I am with regards to what she will have for lunch.

These little beasts are similar to falafels but have a softer centre and a nice crispy outside. For me these are a little under-seasoned so I think next time I'd go ahead and add a mixture of spices rather than just cumin and I'd include some bombay spice, ground coriander and plenty of salt and pepper. I couldn't get hold of "fine bulgar" which was stated in the original recipe and my processor wouldn't crush the bulgar so normal went in. It didn't make much of a difference I'm sure.

These were fine but there is definitely room for improvement. Plus sides are that these are pretty easy to customise and are vegan (no egg to bind).

I've modified this recipe in order to make it easier to follow. I've added my changes and also converted to metric.

200g red lentils
600ml water
115g bulgar wheat
1 1/2 tsp tomato puree
2 tsp chilli sauce
2 tsp chilli powder
2tbsp olive oil
1 large onion
2 cloves garlic
1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
(also add other spices e.g. bombay curry mix, ground coriander etc. to taste)
Handful of chopped fresh coriander
Squeeze of lemon juice

Put lentils in a saucepan with the water. Bring to a boil over high heat and skim off the foam that collects on the surface. Turn the heat to low and simmer until the lentils are yellow and very mushy, 20-30 minutes.
Meanwhile, put bulgar in a large bowl.
Stir the tomato paste and chilli sauce into lentil mixture, turn the heat back up to high and bring this mixture to a boil. Once it's boiling, turn off the heat and pour it over the bulgar. Stir well and set aside for half an hour.
Meanwhile, chop the onion quite finely and saute in the olive oil. When it begins to get golden brown, add the garlic, cumin, and plenty of freshly ground black pepper. Cook about two minutes more.
Once the bulgar and lentils have sat for their full half hour, add the contents of the skillet, oil and all. Mix very well, kneading everything together. Add the coriander, chilli powder and lemon juice. Mix again and adjust for salt.
Preheat the oven to 350. Shape the mixture into an small rounds and arrange on a baking sheet, preferably one lined with parchment.
Bake for 10-15 minutes. Allow to cool slightly in the tray then transfer to a wire rack.
Serve warm or cold with raita or dip of your choice.
Store in an airtight container in the fridge.


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