So here I am, with one of my favorite new veggie burger recipes: Lentil-Chickpea Burgers. I made it last month for one of my weekly clients who's interested in eating more vegetarian meals, and it was such a hit that she requests it every week. Sounds like a good comeback blog item to me.....
I start out by cooking lentils. I prefer green lentils because they tend to hold up better than red lentils. You only need 1 cup of cooked lentils for the burgers, but I find it a little more difficult to cook small amounts of lentils, so I go ahead and use 1 cup uncooked; it'll yield more lentils than you need, but you can save the rest and add to soup or a salad. Put the lentils and enough water to cover by a couple inches (usually 3 times the amount of dried lentils) in a saucepan and bring to a boil. I only cook them for about 10 minutes, so they are still fairly firm. Then drain them, measure out 1 cup and put them in a food processor.
Add a can of chickpeas (garbanzo beans), some shredded carrot, chopped scallion, fresh cilantro, ground cumin and coriander, lemon zest and salt & pepper. Pulse it to break down the ingredients a bit , then add an egg and some panko and pulse again until fully combined.
Since I work with people who avoid both of those last ingredients, I have a couple alternatives for you, if you are in the same boat: instead of an egg, you can make a flax slurry - 1 tablespoon ground flax meal mixed with 3 tablespoons water is the equivalent to 1 egg (let it sit for a couple minutes to congeal), and if you are going gluten-free, just place a couple slices of toasted gluten-free bread in a food processor and blend until you have breadcrumbs.
Form the mixture into 4-6 patties, depending on the size you like and pan fry in oil about 4-5 minutes per side until lightly browned - a cast iron skillet will help facilitate that beautiful browning. Leave enough space between patties so that you can easily flip them.
I top mine with a little avocado sauce - blend 1 avocado, juice of 1 lime, a handful of cilantro, about 1/2 cup water and a pinch of salt in a Bullet or mini chopper. If you only have a blender, this amount may be too small to blend properly, so double it, using just enough water to get the consistency you like.
1 cup cooked green lentils
1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1/2 cup shredded carrot
1/2 cup loosely packed cilantro leaves
1 large scallion, chopped
Zest of 1 lemon
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon coriander
1/2 cup panko
1 egg, lightly beaten
Salt and Pepper to taste
2 tablespoons olive oil
- Place cooked lentils, chickpeas, carrot, cilantro, scallion, zest, cumin and coriander in the bowl of a food processor and pulse 4-5 times to break down the ingredients.
- Add panko, egg, salt and pepper and continue to pulse until well blended.
- Form into 4-6 patties, depending on your taste.
- Heat oil in a large skillet (preferably cast iron) and cook 4-5 minutes per side until lightly browned.