PNW Sunrise Lentil Cakes with Toasted Coriander Lemon Aioli

PNW Sunrise Lentil Cakes with Toasted Coriander Lemon Aioli
Created By: Chef Robin Leventhal, Crave Food
Use: Pardina Brown Lentils, Shasta Yellow Lentils
Yields: About 15 servings
Kid-approved, Vegetarian

PNW Sunrise Lentil Cakes with Toasted Coriander Lemon Aioli
Recipe and photo courtesy of Chef Robin Leventhal, Crave Food and Crave Clay.

Ingredients for Lentil Cakes:

4 cups PNW Co-op Specilaty Foods lentils (I used a mix of Spanish Pardina, Sunrise Red, and Shasta Yellows)

2 cups yellow onion, diced small

1/2 cup Shallots, minced

2 Tablespoons fresh garlic, minced

2 cups carrots, diced small

1 Tablespoon dried Thyme

2 ea. Bay Leaf

2 eggs

1/2 - 1 cup flour (as needed, see instructions)

1 Tablespoon Cumin - whole seed toasted and ground

1 Tablespoon Coriander - whole seed toasted and ground

1 large lemon, zested and juiced

1 cup bacon, thick cut minced (Optional)

1/2 cup white wine

8 cups Stock or water

Salt & pepper to taste


  • In heavy deep sauce pot sauté diced bacon on medium until crisp and fat is rendered. Remove bacon bits from pan and reserve.
  • Add onions and sauté in bacon fat on low until translucent,
  • If you are vegetarian start onions in vegetable oil, grape seed oil or butter.
  • Add shallots to onions along with thyme and 1 Tbls kosher salt, turn heat to medium cook 3 minutes stirring, then add garlic cumin and coriander and cook a few minutes more.
  • If pan is dry add more oil or butter, or bacon fat if you have some extra on hand
  • Add carrots and sauté quickly to coat with seasoned onion mixture.
  • Once brown bits form on the bottom of the pot it’s time to deglaze with the wine.
  • Scrape bits with wooden spoon then add stock and bay leaf, bit more salt and pepper.
  • Cook on medium high until lentils are tender but not mushy.
  • Add Lemon zest and juice and taste for seasoning and adjust as needed.  All the liquid should be absorbed before you puree.  A loose mixture will require more egg and flour to bind the cakes
  • Remove ½ the lentils and pulse in food processor then add back to the pot.
  • Add bacon and mix well to incorporate the lentil mixture.
  • It’s best to let this cool before forming patties. Either cook one day ahead or spread on sheet pans and let cool for an hour before adding flour and egg to assist with binding.
  • Once cooled add 2 whole eggs and enough flour that when you squeeze in hand it maintains that shape.
  • Now form into round balls, roll in semolina or fine cornmeal, flatten and repeat. Breadcrumbs will work but not give the crunchy outside that the corn meals will.
  • Pan fry cakes in a sauté pan with vegetable or grape seed oil on Medium until golden brown then flip and continue until done on both sides.
  • Serve as a side dish for fish, on a bed of greens, or in a sandwich as a burger replacement

Ingredients for Toasted Coriander Lemon Aioli:
1 teaspoon garlic, fresh minced

1 lemon, zested & juiced

1 Tablespoon Dijon mustard

2 teaspoons Coriander - whole seed toasted & ground

1/2 teaspoon Tumeric (optional)


1 cup Olive oil

Salt & Pepper to taste

Add all to blender and slowly stream in oil, or do with a hand mixer or in a mixing bowl with whisk.

Freeze formed raw lentil cakes for a quick meal later. Another great option is to save 1/2 the lentil mixture before you pulse in a food processor and add more stock for a hearty soup.  Two dishes out of one pot, now THAT is a time saver!

For more information about Chef Robin Leventhal, please visit her website, Crave Food and Crave Clay.