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A&E >  Food

National Lentil Festival celebrates 30 years with these three recipes

The 30th annual National Lentil Festival is Friday and Saturday in Pullman.

Here’s a sneak peek at the recipes that will be prepared on the demo stage during the fest, which started in 1989.

For more information and a complete list of activities, visit, or call 800-365-6948.

Roasted Lemon Chickpea Salad

From Patty Brehm of Kitchen Counter in Moscow, Idaho

½ pound chickpeas (pedrosillano if possible)

2 to 3 lemons

1 cup red pepper, diced

2 cups cucumbers, diced

½ cup scallions, finely sliced

1 pint cherry tomatoes, sliced

1 bunch parsley, finely chopped

Fresh herbs, finely chopped (mint, oregano, basil, dill) optional

1 cup extra virgin olive oil

Sea salt, to taste

Freshly cracked black pepper, to taste

Soak chickpeas overnight, then simmer on medium heat until tender. Drain and set aside.

Meanwhile, slice lemons in half and roast cut side down in 350 degree oven until soft (approximately 20 minutes). Squeeze lemons over warm chickpeas, toss and let rest at least 15 minutes.

Next, add all veggies, herbs and olive oil. Toss again, then add sea salt and pepper. Adjust seasons as needed. Serve cold or at room temperature. If desired, add feta, grilled chicken or fish for an entree salad.

Triple Lentil Bites, featuring Sprouted Lentils, Sunny Lentil Dip, Curried Lentil Socca and Coconut Crema

From Gretchen Stoops Luongo of Moscow Food Co-op

For the Sprouted Lentils:

1 ½ cup lentils

For the Sunny Lentil Dip:

¼ cup coconut oil

¼ cup olive oil

2 teaspoons ground coriander

1 tablespoons ginger, minced

4 teaspoons garlic, minced

1 ½ teaspoons cumin

1 ½ teaspoons garam masala

½ teaspoon turmeric

1 ½ teaspoons salt

½ cup tomato paste

2 tablespoons minced jalapenos

3 cups cooked red lentils (about 1½ cups uncooked)

3 tablespoons lemon juice

¾ cup water

1 cup cilantro, minced

½ cup green onion, minced

For the Curried Lentil Socca:

1 cup lentil flour

1 cup garbanzo flour

2 cups water

½ cup melted coconut oil

2 teaspoons salt, generous pinch of pepper

¼ cup toasted, unsweetened, fine shred coconut

2 teaspoons curry powder

½ teaspoon coriander

¼ cup minced cilantro

2 teaspoons lime juice

For the Coconut Crema:

1 cup coconut yogurt

½ tablespoon lime juice

1 tablespoon coconut milk

Make the Lentils: Place raw lentils in a glass jar with enough water to cover, then cover the jar with a kitchen towel. Soak the lentils overnight, then rinse and drain. Store the lentils in a warm place, and repeat rinsing and draining twice daily until they sprout (about three days).

Make the Sunny Lentil Dip: Add coconut oil and olive oil to a saucepan and slowly add each spice. Sauté spices until they are fragrant, about 3 minutes. In a food processor, combine the spice blend with tomato paste, minced jalapeños, cooked red lentils, lemon juice and water. Blend until smooth. Add the cilantro and onions, and pulse until well incorporated.

Make the Curried Lentil Socca: Whisk all ingredients together until smooth. Let the mixture rest for at least 30 minutes, or up to overnight in the fridge. If you decide to leave it in the fridge, it will develop a sourdough characteristic. To cook, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a non-stick skillet and drop batter in as you would a pancake. (These can be as big or small as you’d like.) Fry until golden brown, then flip. Cut into wedges, if desired.

Make the Coconut Crema: Whisk ingredients together, adding more lime juice or coconut milk as necessary until similar to sour cream.

Assemble the Dish: top each piece of socca with a dollop of lentil dip and a sprinkle of sprouted lentils. Finish each bite with a drizzle of coconut crema, and topped it all off with a sprig of cilantro.

Moroccan Lentil and Sweet Potato Cakes with Arugula-Cherry Tomato Salad, Labneh Cheese and Spiced Yogurt

From Jamie Callison of Washington State University School of Hospitality Business Management

For the Lentil Cakes:

1¼ cups sweet potato, baked and pureed

¾ cup dried French green Lentils, rinsed and sorted

1 tablespoon avocado oil

½ cup Walla Walla Sweet onions, finely diced

1 tablespoon fresh thyme, finely chopped

½ teaspoon kosher salt

2 teaspoons fresh garlic, finely minced

1 whole bay leaf

2 tablespoons Moroccan seasoning (ingredients below)

2 cups water

1 teaspoon lemon juice

1 large egg

½ cup whole wheat bread crumbs

2 tablespoons Italian parsley, finely chopped

¼ cup fresh basil, finely chopped

2 ounces marinated labneh cheese

For the Arugula-Cherry Tomato Salad:

2 cups cherry tomatoes

4 cups arugula

¼ cup olive oil

2 teaspoons lemon juice

¼ teaspoon kosher salt

¼ teaspoon fresh dill, finely chopped

Freshly ground pepper, to taste

For the Spiced Yogurt:

½ cup plain Greek yogurt

2 teaspoons Moroccan seasoning (ingredients below)

½ teaspoon lemon juice

¼ teaspoon kosher salt

For the Moroccan Seasoning:

3 tablespoons ground cumin

2 tablespoons ground coriander

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon ground allspice

1 teaspoon ground cloves

1 ½ teaspoons ground chili powder

1 teaspoon ground paprika

½ teaspoon ground cayenne

1 teaspoon ground black pepper

½ teaspoon star anise, ground

½ teaspoon ground fennel seed

½ teaspoon ground thyme

½ teaspoon ground basil

½ teaspoon ground oregano

1 teaspoon granulated sugar

2 teaspoons kosher salt

Make the Lentil Cakes: Rinse and sort dried lentils, removing any non-lentil material. In a small sauce pot, sweat out onions and thyme in avocado oil until onions are translucent. Add kosher salt, garlic, bay leaf and Moroccan seasoning, and cook for about 2 minutes on low. Don’t brown the garlic, or it will become bitter. Add dried lentils and water, bring to the boiling point, reduce to a simmer and cook for approximately 20 minutes or until lentils are done. Don’t strain off liquid. Remove 1/3 of the lentils and set aside. Remove bay leaf and place the rest of the lentils with the remaining liquid into a sauté pan and cook until dry. Mixture should start to hold together and form a ball. Place lentil mixture in a stand mixer with pureed sweet potato and mix together with a paddle attachment for about 30 seconds. Add egg, bread crumbs, Italian parsley, basil and lemon, and mix until smooth, for about 30 seconds. Season to taste with fresh ground black pepper and kosher salt. If desired, add more Moroccan seasoning. Add remainder lentils and mix for about 15 seconds. Use immediately or refrigerate until needed. Form lentil patties to the desired size. Heat just enough avocado oil to coat the bottom of a non-stick sauté pan, and then cook lentil patties on both sides until golden brown.

Make the Arugula-Cherry Tomato Salad: Wash and mix arugula and cherry tomatoes. Whisk together, olive oil, lemon juice, salt, dill and pepper. Dress arugula and cherry tomatoes with lemon-olive oil mixture.

Make the Spiced Yogurt: Mix Greek yogurt with Moroccan seasoning, lemon juice and salt.

Assemble the dish: Serve lentil cakes with spiced yogurt sauce, salad and labneh cheese.

Notes: A 1-pound sweet potato yields about 1¼ cups of puree. One medium Walla Walla Sweet onion yields about 1½ cups diced onion. You can purchase Moroccan seasoning at most grocery stores. However, Callison suggests making it from scratch. Make a large enough batch for future use on items like grilled chicken and lamb.

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