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Black Lentil Burgers with Pineapple Salsa


    Serves 4


    The vibrant yellow salsa with a sweet kick from pineapple is a fetching contrast to the fibre-packed lentil burgers. More common green lentils can be substituted for the black ones, but they tend to produce moister burgers so you may need to add some additional wheatgerm to offset this. Uncooked burgers can be made up to three days in advance and cooked as needed.

    1 cup (250 ml) black beluga lentils, rinsed
    1 1/2 cups (325 ml) finely diced pineapple
    1 yellow capsicum, finely diced
    1/2 cup (125 ml) finely diced Spanish onion
    1/3 cup (80 ml) fresh chopped coriander 
    1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and minced
    2 Tbsp (40 ml) dried unsweetened coconut 
    Zest of 1 lime
    Juice of 1/2 lime
    1/2 cup (125 ml) wheatgerm
    1/2 cup (125 ml) grated parmesan cheese
    1/3 cup (80 ml) flat-leaf parsley 
    1 large free-range egg
    2 garlic cloves, crushed
    1 1/2 Tbsp (30 ml) balsamic vinegar
    3 tsp (15 ml) Dijon mustard
    1/2 tsp (2 ml) cumin powder
    Juice of 1/2 lemon
    1/4 tsp (1 ml) freshly ground black pepper
    1/3 cup (80 ml) chopped walnuts 
    2/3 cup (160 ml) pitted kalamata olives, finely chopped 
    3 tsp (15 ml) grapeseed oil, for frying

    Place lentils and 2 1/2 cups (625 ml) water in medium saucepan, bring to a boil and simmer until lentils are tender, about 20 minutes. Drain and let cool slightly.

    Meanwhile, make salsa by combining pineapple, yellow capsicum, onion, coriander, jalapeño, coconut, lime zest and lime juice in large bowl.

    Add 1 1/2 cups (350 ml) of cooked lentils to food processor along with wheatgerm, parmesan, parsley, egg, garlic, balsamic vinegar, mustard, cumin, lemon juice and black pepper. Blend until mixture is only slightly grainy. Add remaining lentils, walnuts and olives and pulse until they are incorporated into mixture. Form into 8 equal-sized patties, about 1 in (2.5 cm) thick.

    Cook patties, in batches if necessary, in frying pan over medium heat with oil for 3 minutes per side. Or prepare burgers in a 350 F (180 C) oven for 10 minutes, flipping halfway through baking time. Overcooking will result in dry burgers, so cook them just until browned on the outside but still slightly moist.

    Serve lentil burgers topped with salsa.

    Each serving contains: 1972 kilojoules; 26 g protein; 18 g total fat (6 g sat. fat, 0 g trans fat); 58 g total carbohydrates (9 g sugars, 15 g fibre); 447 mg sodium ‡

    source: "Colour Your Plate", alive Australia #18, Summer 2013


    Black Lentil Burgers with Pineapple Salsa



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    Artichokes can be somewhat intimidating. But once you’ve made your way past its spiky exterior and removed the thistlelike choke, there lies a tender heart with a sweet flavour. The meaty bases of artichoke leaves are also edible and make perfect dipping vehicles to scoop up sauce or, in this case, a stuffing with just a touch of Spanish serrano ham and Marcona almonds. Artichokes take a bit of care to prepare—and to eat—but they present a wonderful opportunity to slow down and savour flavourful ingredients. Don’t be afraid to use your hands! How to clean an artichoke Fill a bowl large enough to accommodate artichokes with water. Cut a lemon in half, squeeze the juice into water, and drop lemon halves into water. Cut a second lemon in half and set it aside. You’ll use this to brush the artichoke as you trim it to prevent the blackening that occurs as the artichoke is exposed to oxygen. You can also rub your hands with lemon, which will stop your hands from blackening. Wash and dry your artichoke. Remove tough leaves around the base of the stem by pulling them away from the body of the artichoke, rubbing artichoke with lemon as you do so. With serrated knife, cut through artichoke crosswise, about 1 in (2.5 cm) from the top. Rub exposed part with lemon. With kitchen shears, remove spiky tips of remaining outer leaves. Use peeler to remove small leaves near the stem and the tough outer layer of the stem. Rub peeled stem with lemon. Using serrated knife once more, cut through artichoke lengthwise, severing the bulb and stem. Again, rub all exposed parts with lemon. Use small paring knife to cut around the spiky, hairlike choke and then use spoon to scoop it out. Rinse artichoke quickly under water and then place in bowl of lemon water while you prepare the remaining artichoke.