I love to create patties out of many different products: beans, grains, veggies, mushrooms, and so on – the possibilities seem endless. I do not call them burger on purpose, in order to steer away from the meat association. And talking about that, in my experience the most frequent question that vegans get asked is: where do you get your protein from? Apart from the fact that most people tend to overestimate the amount of protein they really need, animal products are not the only source of sufficient protein – the plant world is full of them!
The following recipe is a great example of a delicious vegan protein source: a patty based on quinoa and lentils. Both have a decent protein content, with quinoa at about 5% protein content per weight, and lentils at about 10%. In addition, quinoa is gluten free, easy to digest, and contains good quantities of phosphorus, calcium and iron, while lentils are a good source of iron and folate (just to name a few perks). Finally, because it is plant based, this patty is a very good source of fiber (about 5% per weight) and of course cholesterol free.
This recipe includes a not so well know ingredient: coconut flour. Here, it serves as a gluten-free binding agent. It also works great for baking: in any recipe, simply replace a quarter of the flour with coconut flour.
Quinoa Lentil Patties
makes about 20 small patties (2in diameter)
- ¾ cup dry quinoa (130g)
- ¾ cup dry red lentils (140g)
- ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons (45g) coconut flour
- ¼ teaspoon chipotle
- ¼ teaspoon paprika
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- pinch of pepper
- coconut oil for pan frying
- To cook the quinoa rinse it first under running water and then place it in a pot with 1½ cups of water and a pinch of salt. Cover, bring to a boil, then continue to cook it covered on low heat until the water is absorbed (about 15 minutes).
- To cook the lentils rinse them first and place them in a pot. Cover with water to have about ½ inch of water above the lentils, add a pinch of salt, cover, and bring to a boil. Then reduce heat and let them simmer uncovered until they are soft and the water is absorbed (about 10 minutes)
- Let the quinoa and lentils cool off after cooking, then transfer them to a food processor or blender, and process quickly to obtain a uniform mass. Transfer the blended mixture to a big bowl and combine with the remaining ingredients. Please note that the mixture can be very dense, and it is easiest to use the hands for mixing everything.
- Before frying all patties a test one is made: Take a little bit of the mixture, form a ball and then press it flat to form a patty. In a frying pan, heat a little bit of coconut oil and fry the test patty until golden brown on each side. Taste it and adjust the seasoning if necessary. Please don’t use too much oil, this is pan frying and not deep frying!
- Form the rest of the patties and fry them in the same way.They should be crispy on the outside and soft in the inside.
The patty mixture can be made ahead of time and stored in the fridge for several days. That allows you to fry the patties right before serving. They can be enjoyed warm or cold. You can serve them plain with a side of veggies or crumble them on top of a salad. And of course they work great between a burger bun or on top of a sandwich, accompanied by avocados, tomatoes, cucumbers, mustard, and so on.