This recipe was actually part of my assignment for the Culinary Nutrition Expert program I am currently undertaking. They were absolutely delicious! The background and inspiration of this recipe was to come up with a very specific recipe that is meant to help alleviate symptoms of a health condition. For me the health condition I have been researching on has been infertility.
I am learning loads on foods that can heal and help improve fertility and those that affect fertility negatively. According to research foods such as processed meats, full fat dairy, soda and fizzy drinks have been linked to infertility.
The good news is there are plenty of whole organic foods that help boost fertility. For this recipe I chose the top 3 foods that are known to boost male fertility- Lentils, Walnuts and Tomatoes. I am excited to share just how potent these three foods are.
Lentils are a power food! Lentils are one of the richest food sources of folate (natural folic acid) which is important for male fertility. Just one cup of lentils provides nearly your entire 400 microgram Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) of folate.
Walnuts are quickly becoming one of my favorite nuts! They are a rich source of Omega 3 fatty acids. If you have been following health trends lately, the need to up our Omega 3 has become all the more crucial. Omega 3 is not just good for our brain but it has been known to increase fertility.Eating 2.5 oz or around 75g of walnuts (about a handful) daily is linked with increased sperm vitality, motility and morphology.
And lastly Tomatoes. We actually have so much tomatoes and have grown up eating them all our lives that we may just take for granted how potent they are! Tomatoes are one of the best food sources of the antioxidant lycopene. Sperm is particularly vulnerable to free radical damage known as oxidative stress. Free radicals are unstable molecules that are linked with cellular destruction and in high levels endanger sperm function and viability. Causes of free radicals in the body include poor nutrition, pollutants such as smoking, environmental chemicals and poor detoxification processes by the body.
Research actually shows the cooking of tomatoes appears to increase the availability of key nutrients, making it optimal for the efficient absorption of lycopene.So we have been doing it right all along yeay!
As I was developing the recipe, I found it hard at first to include tomatoes in the recipe. I could not add tomatoes into the burger mixture as that would have made it too wet. I also did not want to leave the tomatoes raw to add on top of the patty, as that would not have offered the most flavors. The idea to roast the tomatoes made a big difference in terms of flavor and presentation.
These burger patties go great on lettuce wraps, pitas or burger buns. You can also have them with a salad with your favourite dressing. Incredibly nutritious and filling!
Lentil Walnut Burgers with Roasted Tomatoes
- ½ cup chopped red onions
- 1 clove of garlic
- ¼ inch fresh ginger
- ½ cup walnuts
- ¼ cup chopped cilantro
- ¾ teaspoon sea salt
- ¾ teaspoon coriander
- ¾ teaspoon cumin
- ½ teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon Spanish paprika
- ¾ teaspoon black pepper
- ½ teaspoon garam masala
- ½ teaspoon dried thyme
- ½ teaspoon dried oregano
- ¾ cup cooked quinoa
- 1 ½ cups cooked lentils
- 2 tablespoons organic ketchup
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 egg
- 6 tablespoons oat flour
- For the Roasted Tomatoes
- 3 large tomatoes sliced into rings- about 4 slices per tomato
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- Pinch of black pepper and sea salt
- Step 1 Preheat over to 350 degrees. Slice the tomatoes and place them on a parchment lined baking tray. Drizzle the olive oil over them and sprinkle the thyme, black pepper and salt, making sure both sides are well coated.
- Step 2 Roast for 20 mins, until the Tomatoes caramelize. Remove and place on a rack to cool.
- Step 3 In a food processor, process onions, garlic, ginger, walnuts and cilantro until well processed. Add the salt and spices, dried herbs, quinoa and half of the lentils and process. Leave the other half of the lentils to mix in whole.
- Step 4 Finally, add the ketchup, olive oil and oat flour and mix well. If you feel the mixture is still too wet, add more flour to the desired consistency. Mix in the other half of the cooked whole lentils and mix using a spatula. Cover the container and let the mixture chill in the fridge for 10 minutes.
- Step 5 Shape about 6 patties well packed. Heat a skillet or pan over medium heat. Using about a teaspoon of ghee per patty, fry the patties, until golden brown on each side- about 5 minutes each side.
- Step 6 Serve over lettuce with the roasted tomatoes on top and a dressing of choice
*Inspirations from Lentil and Walnut Burger by Vegan Richa