(Photo: Mini spicy lentil patties with unflavored yogurt - almost gone! I was too busy hosting my dietitian SOLE Sisters book club to get a photo of the full plate.)
I've entered this delicious, nutritious, easy, and cost-conscious recipe in a contest sponsored by the North Carolina Sweet Potato Commission. Did I mention that it is a beautiful dish to serve, too? The recipe pictured at the top of the post is the "mini" version, just right for appetizers. Tonight for supper I am going to pull out the larger patties that I froze when making this recipe last week as my own fast food that is really slow food. :-)
I'm sure there will be lots and lots of scrumptious sweet potato recipes entered into this contest. I'm looking forward to seeing them and experimenting with adding kale (or other Brassica greens) to them, too, like I did to this recipe.
Recipe: Spicy Lentil-Sweet Potato with Kale Patties
(Photo: cooked lentils with garlic and seasonings added, cooked sweet potato waiting to be peeled, frozen kale waiting to chop, whole grain bread crumbs)• 2 cups (1# bag) dry green lentils (they look brown, not green)
• 2 bay leaves
• 3-4 cloves garlic, minced
• 1/2 tsp. salt
• 1 tsp. chili powder
• 1-2 tsp. ground cumin
• 1/2 tsp. coriander
• 1/2 tsp. black pepper
• 1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper and mixed Italian herbs (each)
• 1 large sweet potato, baked, peeled, mashed
• 1-2 cups frozen kale, thawed, drained well, chopped small
• 1/2 cup bread crumbs (make yourself from left-over bread)
• 2 tsp. olive oil or parchment paper
• Fresh Salsa or unflavored yogurt
1) Combine lentils and bay leaf in large soup pot. Add water to cover by 3 inches. Boil until lentils are very tender, about 1 hour. Drain water from lentils and discard bay leaf. Transfer lentils to a large bowl and cool.
2) Then add seasonings. Stir with lentils until well blended. Cover lentils and refrigerate overnight.
3) Bake sweet potato(s) in oven or microwave. Cool, peel, and coarsely mash. Add mashed potato to lentil mixture the next day and mix well.
4) Chop kale, squeeze with your hands to make as dry as possible, then add to mixture
5) Using a spoon or both hands, form mixture into balls. Flatten each ball into a 1/2" pattie for the "mini" version. These can be any size (I made two dozen "mini-patties" plus several "burger-size"). Press breadcrumbs lightly onto patties. Cover and refrigerate 30 minutes to 6 hours.
6) Heat in non-stick pan with small amount of olive oil or baked in oven on parchment paper until hot and crispy at 350 for 20-30 minutes (I baked mine). Flip over at the half-way point. Freeze any extras for a fast meal in the future.
I served these mini patties (pictured at the top of the post) at my book club last week. Two different people tasted them before asking me what they were, and each independently declared that these were even better than falafel. Now that is a compliment!
Using sweet potatoes plus adding kale kicked this basic tasty lentil patty recipe up several notches for both flavor and nutrition. This recipe belongs in my file of "Nutrition Rock Stars" and will be used again and again in the future!
Where kale is more than decoration on my plate (plus I use sweet potatoes every chance I get)!
Diana Dyer, MS, RD