1 cup red lentils
1 1/3 cup fine/thin bulgur wheat
1/3 bunch parsley
4 spring onions
1 large onion
1/2 cup Colive oil
2 tbsp concentrated tomato puree/ paste*
1/2 tbsp sea salt
1/3 tsp black pepper
1/3 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp Aleppo pepper/chili flakes (optional)
Lettuce and lemon (to serve)
1. Put 1 cup red lentils in a pan with 3 cups of water and bring to boil. As they boil, they will get softer and absorb the water. This would happen after 20 -30 minutes. When the water is mostly gone, add 1 1/3 cup of thin/fine bulgur in this pan and mix. Cover the top and remove from the hob. Let it rest this way for 30 minutes to give bulgur a chance to ‘cook’.
2. Chop the large onion into small cubes.
3. In a separate pan, saute the onion with 1/2 cup of Colive oil. Once they are soft and translucent, add 2 tbsp of tomato paste. Mix well and let them cook together for 2-3 minutes until the onions and oil become red.
4. Chop spring onions and parsley finely.
5. In a big mixing bowl, put all the ingredients together ( lentil and bulgur from the pan, sauteed onions with tomato puree, finely chopped parsley and spring onion ) Make sure they are not hot and safe to touch. Mix and knead these ingredients together.
6. Add the spices (salt, black pepper, cumin, and Aleppo pepper) and mix a bit more to combine well.
7. Wet your hands with some water and start making your lentil balls.
8. Serve on lettuce and drizzle with lemon juice before you take a bite.
These nutritious balls are very easy to throw together and make the ultimate vegan party snacks or finger food.
* If you have mild pepper paste at hand, feel free to replace 1 tbsp of tomato paste with pepper paste :)