These dumplings are not only hearty but they also melt in the mouth. The mix of middle eastern spices mean that everyone is pleasantly surprised when they dig into this comforting and fragrant dish. It is a Hairy Bikers recipe that I have simplified and made vegan and is every bit as delicious as the original.
Ingredients, serves 3-4
1 can of green lentils, drained, brine from can retained
1 tbsp oil
1 small onion finely sliced
1 carrot grated
100g spinach, finely sliced
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
1 tsp ground cumin
Half a teaspoon cinnamon
25g pinenuts, lightly crushed
50g fine breadcrumbs
Zest and juice of 1 lemon
2 tbsp finely chopped parsley
2 tbsp harissa paste
1 small bunch of parsley, finely chopped
Preheat the oven to 200 Celsius.
Heat oil in a frying pan and add the onion and carrot. Fry on a low/medium heat until the onions are soft.
Turn the heat to low. Add the spinach and cook until wilted and any water has evaporated. Add the garlic, cook for a minute and then add the spices. Season to taste.
Add the breadcrumbs, pine nuts, lemon zest and juice and parsley. Mix together and take off the heat before adding the lentils and 3 tablespoons of the brine collected from the can of lentils. Mix together, it should start to clump together. Let it cool slightly before forming into 12 balls.
Place on a baking tray and bake for 15 minutes.
Meanwhile put the passata into a casserole or deep frying pan. Add the harissa paste and stir together with a finely chopped small bunch of parsley and a squeeze of lemon juice. Simmer for 10 minutes.
When the dumplings are ready place them in a single layer into the sauce. Cook on a low heat with a lid on for about 10 minutes and then serve immediately.
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