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Spicy Lentil Burgers

This recipe is inspired by a veggie burger I had at an airport ~25 years ago (and much thinking about it since) coupled with something of a eureka moment I had while making dhansak a few weeks ago.


  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 onions
  • 6 cloves of garlic
  • 1 chilli
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp dried fenugreek leaves (or ½ tsp fenugreek powder)
  • 75g puy lentil
  • 75g green lentil
  • 25g red lentil
  • 75g stale breadcrumbs
  • 2 large pinches of salt
  • 1 large pinch black pepper


Slice the onions and the chilli and crush the garlic. Heat a pan with the oil over a medium high heat and fry the onion, chilli and garlic for 3-4 minutes. Add the lentils and fry for another 3-4 minutes then add the salt, pepper and spices. Add a splashes of water as needed if the mixture is too dry (abut 125ml of water in total over the entire cooking time). Grate the carrot and stir into the mix. After about 5 minutes turn off the heat and allow to cool for 15-20 minutes. Stir in the breadcrumbs.

The burger mix should be dry and quite sticky when it has cooled. The burger should bind well and be either shallow fried for 3-4 minutes each side or baked in the oven for 15-20 minutes with a dusting of polenta.

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