Eggplant and lentil patties

I decided that since I have been bad with updating for the past 2 months or so, this week I will be good and give you 3 recipes!

This recipe was inspired by Manu’s Menu eggplant patties. In my version though there are lentils in the patties. I had leftover lentils an I figured they would work well to make patties.

And they did! the result where super soft pattes with a flavor profile close to that of Middle Eastern dishes (well of course that might be because I added Middle Eastern spices to it).

By the way, eggplants are a great substitute for meat and I served my patties with pita bread and tomato sauce. They made for a really nice dinner and they are much better than those vegetarian patties you buy frozen at the supermarket!

Eggplant and lentil patties

Eggplant and lentil patties

Ingredients

  • 3 small eggplants or 1 large
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup cooked lentils
  • spices (I used a blend for Middle Eastern meatballs)
  • breadcrumbs as needed
  • corn flour
  • salt
  • pepper
  • extra virgin olive oil

Directions

    1. First slice your eggplants in half lengthwise and cook them in a 400F oven for about 30 minutes or until soft.
    2. When the eggplants are ready, skin them and combine the eggplant and the lentils in a chopper and mix until pureed.
    3. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and add in the other ingredients. Start with mixing in the egg, the spices and the salt and pepper. I used middle Eastern spices, but basil, oregano or Mediterranean herbs would work great too!
    4. Then add in the breadcrumbs. Keep adding breadcrumbs until you have a more or less manageable dough. The dough should stay soft, but should be dry enough for you to handle and form into patties.

  1. Flour the patties with the flour. I like to use cornflour, because I find it gives a bit more of a crunch than regular flour when it is fried.
  2. Shallow fry the patties in the olive oil until browned on both sides. Serve hot with a bit of tomato sauce and your favorite side. Or make it a hamburger of sort by putting it in a bun or a pita as I did.

Eggplant Pesto Recipe

Before eggplants disappear from our pantries for the season, I’ll give you a simple recipe for an eggplant pesto inspired by the eggplant and walnut cream proposed by Giulia on her wonderful website Alterkitchen.

I used thai eggplant and used it to dress cheese tortellini. It is a rather delicate pesto, that is a good spin on the traditional walnut sauce traditional in Liguria and usually used to dress past or very simple ravioli filled with cheese and herbs. Don’t use it to dress tortellini with elaborate fillings or even simple ones with a distinctive flavor. You want the sauce to complement the filling not overpower it, and while the sauce works for cheese filling, it wouldn’t work for meat fillings or even for spinach and cheese.

Eggplant pesto

Ingredients

  • thai eggplants (or regular eggplants)
  • 1/2 cup mixed nuts
  • 1 bunch basil
  • salt
  • olive oil

Directions

  1. Start by cutting the eggplants in half and roasting them in a 400F oven until tender. With the thai eggplants you will only need about 10 minutes, with regular eggplant you will need 1/2 an hour or so.
  2. Blend the eggplants with the nuts (I used a mix of cashews, almonds and pecans) and the basil. As you blend, add some oil an water to smooth out the pesto. Salt to taste and use to to dress pasta or, as I did, cheese tortellini.
  3. You can freeze any leftover for later use.