Red Lentil And Carrot Kofte Recipe
Red lentil and carrot kofte with pomegranates, coriander and cool tahini is a great dinner party canape or veggie starter idea.
Prep time: 20 min, plus 20 minutes standing
Cook time: 50 min
Serves: Makes 30 (serves 6)
35 ml tahini
1¾ lemons, juiced
4 garlic cloves, crushed
6 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
90 g red lentils
50 g bulgur wheat
200 g carrots
a pinch of caster sugar
1 red onion, very finely chopped
1 tbsp ground cumin
1 tbsp ground paprika
1 tbsp Turkish pepper paste, see tips
1 tbsp tomato purée
2 bunches of coriander, finely chopped
1 pomegranate, seeds only
25 g baby salad leaves, to serve
1. To make the sauce, mix the tahini with 75ml of water, then the juice of ½ a lemon, 1 crushed garlic clove, and 2 tbsp of the extra virgin oil. Season with salt and pepper. It should end up about as thick as double cream. If it’s too thick, add a bit more water.
2. Put the lentils in a pan with 250ml of water. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat to a simmer, cover and cook for 20 minutes, until completely soft. Remove from the heat and add the bulgur, stir, cover and leave for 20 minutes so the grains can plump up.
3. Cook the carrots with the sugar and season with salt and pepper in 150ml of the carrot juice or water (the carrot juice intensifies their flavour). When completely soft, drain, mash and mix with the lentil mixture.
4. Heat a tablespoon of regular olive oil and sauté the red onion until completely soft, for about 7 minutes. Add the cumin, paprika and remaining garlic and cook for another 2 minutes. Stir in the pepper paste and tomato purée and cook for 30 seconds. Stir this into the lentil and carrot mix. Mix in the juice of 1 lemon, half the coriander, seasoning and 2 tablespoons of the extra virgin oil. Taste for seasoning.
5. Shape the kofte mix into balls the size of a walnut in its shell, with an indentation in one side. Put them on a serving platter. Fill each indentation with pomegranate seeds. Toss the remaining coriander and baby leaves with the remaining extra virgin oil and lemon, put on a platter and drizzle with tahini. Serve the kofte with the salad.