I used to love having crab cakes out at restaurants. After giving up meat, chicken and fish, I had to wave bye-bye to crab cakes.
I recently tinkered around and made a vegetarian version using lentils. Although these cakes do not taste like crab, they have the same consistency that I love so much.
Serve the cakes over salad greens topped with a vinaigrette.
- 1 cup uncooked red lentils
- ½ cup uncooked brown rice
- 3 cups water
- ¾ tablespoon salt
- 1 cup breadcrumbs
- 1 egg
- ½ cup wheat germ
- 1 tablespoon sesame seeds
- 2 tablespoons curry powder
- ¾ teaspoon black pepper
- 2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley or cilantro
- More wheat germ to coat patties
- Canola oil for frying
Combine the lentils, rice and water in saucepan and simmer until the rice is tender, about 45 minutes. Let cool.
Place in a large bowl with everything except the last two ingredients. Mix well and form into patties. Coat with the extra wheat germ and fry in oil until golden brown.
Serve the cakes over a salad. I used what I had on hand: lettuce, red onion, cucumber, grated carrots and beets.
Top with a simple vinaigrette. I made my vinaigrette using the juice of two lemons, a heaping ¼ teaspoon of salt, 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard, a generous amount of freshly ground pepper and about ½ cup olive oil.
I make my dressing by placing the ingredients in a jar and shaking. To ensure that your salt dissolves, shake the first two ingredients (the lemon juice and salt) separately for about two minutes. Then add the rest of the ingredients and shake. Taste and see if you like it. If not, adjust and add more of whatever tastes good to you.
To assemble, place salad on plate, top with a lentil cake and drizzle with dressing.
For a vegan version, you can simply omit the egg but the patties won’t stay together as well. Another option is to substitute the egg by mixing one tablespoon of ground flaxseed meal with three tablespoons water and let sit for about five minutes until it thickens.
Editor: Renée Picard
Photo: Courtesy of the Author.