Lentil Goat Cheese Burgers

April 23, 2009 By: Megabeth Category: Main Dishes

Do you have goat cheese and some lentils? Do you like getting your hands gooey? Then, this recipe is perfect for you.

I had some moong dal (yellow lentils) from the Indian store which cooked quickly and worked great for these burgers. I also found some great whole wheat “flat” buns that let the lentil burger be the focus of the meal rather than being hidden under a lot of bread.

I would not recommend putting these burgers on a grill as they are a bit gloopy and sticky. They’d probably fall right into the flame. On a griddle, they are perfect.

Lentil Goat Cheese Burgers
Inspired by: Cara’s Cravings

1 1/4 cups water
1/2 cup dried moong dal (or yellow lentils)
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon olive oi
1/2 large red onion, finely chopped
2 ounces goat cheese (approx 4 tablespoons)
1/4 cup dry breadcrumbs
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 Tablespoon fresh parsley
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
2 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper
1 large egg white, lightly beaten

Place lentils, water and bay leaf into a saucepan and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer for 15-20 minutes. Drain and discard bay leaf.

Lentil Goat Cheese Burger

Put lentils in bowl and mash lightly with a fork.

Lentil Goat Cheese Burger

In small saute pan, heat olive oil on medium-high heat. Add onions and garlic and cook until tender. Remove from heat and set-aside to cool. Add onion/garlic mixture to the lentils and the rest of the ingredients to lentils.

Lentil Goat Cheese Burger

Lentil Goat Cheese Burger

Stir to combine.

Lentil Goat Cheese Burger

Cover and place in refrigerator for at least 45 minutes (so that the liquid can congeal a bit). Remove from refrigerator and divide mixture into four  equal portions. Shape each into a 1/2 inch patty. Spray a griddle or grill an with cooking spray and place it over medium-high heat.

Lentil Goat Cheese Burger

Cook the patties for 5 minutes on each side, being careful not to burn them, until heated through

Lentil Goat Cheese Burger

Crock Pot Curried Rice and Lentils

February 16, 2009 By: Megabeth Category: Main Dishes

This recipe from Fat Free Vegan Kitchen is about as easy as it comes. Just dump all the ingredients into the slow cooker, turn it on low, and walk away. (Actually, I sat on the couch and watched live coverage of the Tour of California while this cooked. I’ll let those cyclists do all the work.) I’ve now got myself several days worth of hearty lunches.

Curry-Spiced Lentils & Spinach
from Fat Free Vegan Kitchen

1 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon turmeric
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
1 medium onion, chopped (I omitted the onion)
2 cloves garlic, crushed and minced
1 cup lentils, rinsed
1/4 cup converted rice (I used basmati rice)
1 10-ounce package chopped spinach, partially thawed and broken up
2 cups vegetable broth
salt to taste
Chopped tomato & mint for garnish, if desired

spinach lentils

Combine first 11 ingredients in the slow cooker/Crock Pot.

spinach lentils

spinach lentils

Cover and cook on low for about 6 hours, or until rice and lentils are tender but not mushy. (Megabeth note: Check on the lentils towards the end of cooking to see if you need to add more liquid.) Add salt to taste; serve garnished with chopped tomato and mint if desired. May be doubled. Makes 2 to 3 main dish servings.

spinach lentils

spinach lentils

Vegetarian Mock Chopped Liver

December 24, 2008 By: Megabeth Category: Side Dishes, Snacks/Appetizers

There is no shortage of mock or vegetarian chopped liver recipes. Some versions use green beans while others use eggplants. It seems that most recipes use lentils.  I chose the recipe below as it was pretty straight forward in it’s preparation, but had an interesting “secret” ingredient – red miso. I knew I had to try that and this recipe came out quite good. (Due to a walnut allergy, I used pecans instead.)

However, be forewarned, much like a cheese ball, mock chopped liver isn’t the best looking dish, but tastes great on crackers or rye bread. That said, the taste is really good. In fact, it had one of my tasters declare, “Wow. This ain’t chopped liver!”

adapted from Vegetarians in Paradise

Yield: 8 to 10 servings

2 1/2 cups water
1/2 cup dried lentils
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cups coarsely chopped pecans
1 large carrot, coarsely shredded
3/4 cup cooked brown rice
1 tablespoon plus 1/2 teaspoon red miso
1 1/2 teaspoons soy sauce
Freshly ground black pepper

Lettuce leaves
Carrot slices
Cucumber slices

1. Combine the water, lentils, and salt in an open 2-quart (2 liter) saucepan. Bring to a boil, turn the heat down to medium, and cook uncovered for 25 to 30 minutes, until the lentils are tender but still firm. (Note: Cook brown rice, per package directions when cooking the lentils. The rice and the lentils will finish up around the same time.)
2. Grind the pecans in the food processor until almost smooth.

3. Add the shredded carrot, onions, brown rice, miso, soy sauce, and pepper to the walnuts in the processor. Drain and discard any excess liquid from the cooked lentils and add them to processor. Process for 1 to 2 minutes, until smooth.

4. Transfer the mixture to lettuce-lined serving bowl or platter and garnish or serve chilled. Stored in a covered container in the refrigerator, Mock Chopped Liver will keep for three days.

Curried Lentils With Spinach

November 25, 2008 By: Megabeth Category: Main Dishes, Side Dishes

I’ve been in a rut lately in terms of cooking. I can’t help it, I blame the weather. It’s been cold, windy and rainy. I’d rather sit on a couch under a blanket then stand in the kitchen doing dinner preparations. Also, because of the winter weather, all I want to eat are soothing stew-like meals. Both of these requirements are met with the curried lentils with spinach recipe. The preparation is pretty much letting the lentils cook and allowing the meal to simmer away on the stove. If you’re feeling spectacularly lazy, as I did this particular night, you can even get away with not having to chop a thing if you use pre-minced garlic and ginger, frozen organic spinach and organic diced tomatoes from a can. I was back on the couch in no time!

Curried Lentils with Spinach
Adapted from the 1984 edition of “Vegetariana: A Rich Harvest of Wit, Lore and Recipes
4 to 6 servings

1 cup raw lentils
1T olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 pound (225 g) spinach leaves, preferably fresh, de-stemmed, washed, and chopped or equivalent of frozen, thawed and drained
1 14-oz (400 g) can imported plum tomatoes with liquid, chopped
2 to 3 T soy sauce or tamari
2T good curry powder, more or less to taste
1/4t freshly grated ginger
1/4t cinnamon
1/4t nutmeg

Wash and sort the lentils and cook until they are tender but firm. (Megabeth note: put 3 cups of water into pan, add lentils, and bring to a boil. Lower the heat then simmer on low for about 40 minutes until lentils are cooked. Check water level towards end of cooking to see if more needs to be added. Drain when lentils finish cooking.)

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet. When it is hot, add the garlic and saute over moderately low heat for 1 minute or so. Add the spinach leaves, cover, and steam until they are wilted. (Megabeth note: I used a bag of organic chopped frozen spinach by Stahlbush. I put in a covered dish, added a little water and put in the microwave for 2 minutes – just enough to thaw. I then added the thawed spinach to the pan, stirred it, and covered for a few minutes to heat it through.)

Add the lentils and the remaining ingredients to the skillet. Cover and simmer over very low heat for 15 minutes.

Serve over grains. This is especially good over brown rice or couscous; or, for a delicious change of pace, try this over mashed potatoes.

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