Little lentil burger balls

Vegan party food – some may think that’s an oxymoron, but they’d be wrong. It’s the best party food around!

Take these little lentil burger balls for example, crispy, tasty little flavour parties in your mouth. My friend gave me this recipe for lentil burger patties as it’s one of her favourites. I’ve just tweaked a few things to fit with what I had on hand, to make them bake-able, and made balls not burgers. Now I have to find someone to eat them…

Little lentil burger balls (makes 40 balls or 4 burgers)

You have a few options here. Flatten these into burger patties and either eat in a bun like a traditional burger, with tomato sauce and salad ingredients, or roll into little balls for dipping as finger food. The recipe this is based on doesn’t include peanut butter, but fries them instead of baking. I added peanut butter to the baked version to keep them together and add moisture. I’d leave it out if I were pan-frying them.

My food processor is still un-fixed, so I sorted these bad boys out with my sick knife skills. I’d still use the processor if it was working, it’s so much quicker.

Ingredients:

  • 1 red capsicum
  • olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed and chopped
  • 400g tin of lentils, drained
  • 2-5 small red chillis, chopped finely
  • 1/3 cup sundried tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup mint leaves
  • 1 tsp vegetable stock (powder or paste)
  • 2 slices grainy bread
  • 1/4 cup natural peanut butter

Method:

  1. If you’ve got a gas stove, turn on one of the flames and sit the capsicum directly on it. Keep turning every few minutes as each side becomes completely blackened. This will take around 10 minutes. Otherwise, preheat oven to 200°C, spray capsicum with cooking spray and grill until blackened. Remove from flame or oven and tie closed in a plastic bag.
  2. Preheat oven to 200°C.
  3. Heat a little oil and saute onion until golden.
  4. Add garlic and saute a little longer.
  5. Process the pieces of bread until turned into fluffy breadcrumbs.
  6. Open the capsicum bag, and using either tongs or a fork, hold up (it’ll be floppy) while scraping the skin off with a bread knife. This can get pretty messy with black bits ending up everywhere. Don’t stress if some of the skin ends up in the burgers, is adds a charred flavour, just watch that not too much does! Once it’s peeled, cut out the seeds and chop the flesh roughly.
  7. Add the capsicum pieces, onion, garlic, 3/4 of the lentils, chillies, sundried tomatoes, stock, mint leaves, bread and peanut butter to the food processor and process until well combined but still chunky.
  8. Stir in the rest of the lentils, spoon onto a baking paper lined tray and squish down a little into patties. Bake for 20 minutes, or until golden brown and crispy.
  9. Serve with a sauce for dipping.
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