Monday, August 29, 2011

Curried Lentil & Tofu Cakes

Given my love for both lentils and cake-shaped things, I guess it shouldn't be much of a surprise that eventually I would try to make a cake-shaped thing out of lentils. I had also been wanting to make something with soft tofu, which until now I had never tried, so I tried combining the two. These cakes turned out very tasty, and with the addition or substitution of your favorite spices and herbs, the flavor is totally flexible.

By my system, this recipe made seven cakes, or about two dinner servings.

1 cup cooked lentils
1/2 cup soft tofu
1/2 large onion, diced
3ish medium mushrooms, diced
1 small carrot, grated
1 clove garlic, diced
3/4 tsp curry powder
3/4 tsp ground coriander
1/4 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
Salt & pepper
Olive oil
1. In a medium frying pan, heat about 2 tbsp olive oil over medium heat and saute mushrooms for about 5 minutes. Add carrot, onion and garlic and cook for another 5 minutes.
2. Add lentils, tofu, and spices and/or herbs. Season with salt and pepper and cook for another 10 minutes, or until mixture holds together in clumps, stirring regularly smooshing out tofu as needed. Let cool.
3. Once the lentil mixture is cool enough to handle, form into small patties, packing together well.
4. In the frying pan, heat about 2 tbsp of olive oil and cook patties for 5 minutes per side.
In truth, I used 1 cup of tofu, and not the 1/2 cup I've listed in the recipe. The flavor of these was great, but since I had a 50% break-apart rate while frying, the texture of the cakes definitely needed to be improved, which could probably be achieved by cutting the tofu back to 1/2 cup to let the clumpyness (for lack of a better term) of the lentils take hold. Still, they were quite tasty when pan-fried to a golden brown, and the crumbly rejects will be delicious with some scrambled eggs for lunch tomorrow.

Quote of the Day: Have a mouth as sharp as a dagger, but a heart as soft as tofu. ~ Chinese Proverb

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