smushed up lentils.

It doesn’t matter what you do.

It doesn’t matter if you’re granted the beauty of natural lighting or if you’re stuck with nothing but orange infused incandescent.

It doesn’t matter.

Smashed up lentils will never look pretty.

HOWEVER!!!

Smashed up lentils can (and should!) taste delicious.

Especially when they’re mixed with Indian spices, caramelized onions and crunchy walnuts (yes, you heard me right!)

I’m obsessed with these tasty burgers.

I love how quick they are to throw together.

And they freeze really nice too, which means you can have lunch or dinner within seconds for those times when time is not an option.

(Warning: some carnivorous cats may try to eat them, unaware that tonight’s dinner is completely vegan…sorry, Humphrey!)

 Indian Spiced Lentil Walnut Burgers

This recipe was adapted from Mollie Katzen’s lentil burgers in her Moosewood Cookbook.  I like making them with the addition of some common Indian spices, which are tasty as well as beneficial.  Spices such as turmeric are known for their antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties.

For leftovers, freeze each patty individually and take out when you want a quick ‘n’ easy meal.  Enjoy!

  • 3/4 cup dry lentils
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup minced onion
  • 4 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 medium carrots, sliced very thin
  • 1/2 cup very finely minced walnuts
  • 1 teaspoon salt (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1/4 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup crushed flax seed
  • optional: serve with avocado, sweet vidalia onion slices, spicy salsa, and/or sliced tomatoes
  1. Place lentils and water in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer, partially covered, for about 20 minutes, or until the lentils are soft and the liquid is mostly gone.  Drain any remaining liquid.  Transfer to a medium-sized bowl and add vinegar.
  2. Heat the oil in a medium-sized skillet. Add onion and sauté over medium heat for about 5 minutes. Add remaining ingredients except the flax seed, and sauté 5 to 10 minutes or until all the vegetables are tender. Add the sautéed mixture and flax seed to the lentils and mix well. Chill for about 1 hour before forming patties.
  3. Form 4-inch diameter patties by grabbing a handful and gently forming into a round ball; smush lightly into a patty (patty will be fragile.)  Heat a small amount of olive oil in a skillet or spray with cooking spray, and sauté the patties on both sides until heated through and crispy. You can also just broil them for about 5 to 8 minutes on each side.  Enjoy!
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13 comments on “smushed up lentils.

  1. I think your lentil burgers sound wonderful. I love the combination of cumin, curry powder and turmeric so the indian spices in your dish sound absolutely delicious. Thanks for sharing the great recipe

  2. Bee says:

    I’m learning food photography, slowly, but I’ve noticed that it’s all about the styling sometimes. I actually saw an online tutorial where they made a very similar green mush look really fresh and vibrant by adding complimenting sides and props and such. Just takes some finagling!

    • You’re so right! Food styling is important. I’m always looking for fresh new tips/suggestions, so feel free to share what you learn here on the blog. :D

      • Maggie says:

        I am a TOTAL newbie at food photography, and my only camera is my iPhone. It can definitely be quite a challenge – I’ll need to look into that tutorial!

  3. jelillie says:

    Ok I will try the smushed up lentils because your other recipes have been such hits with me! :)

  4. broccolihut says:

    I recently posted a recipe for my own lentil burgers and have been really loving them paired with kale chips! I am intrigued by the idea of adding Indian spices to the mix–sounds delicious!

  5. dottylizzy says:

    To a girl who’s not so keen on lentils, these sound completely delicious! I love Indian spices and I think I’m just going to have to give these ago … I’m hungry! :D

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