Uli Yeomans tries cooking a new recipe she enjoyed, whilst visiting relatives for the first time after lockdown.

[New City Magazine – July 2021, page 22]

‘What did you have?’ is often the question you get when telling someone that you’ve been out for a nice meal. And what a treat it is to choose from a multitude of mouth-watering dishes, settling for your all-time favourite, or perhaps something completely new to widen your culinary horizon. What to choose is part of the pleasure of dining out in convivial surroundings, catching up with and enjoying the company of your group – whilst others cook and serve and do the washing up!

Well, I had a beetroot and lentil patty. We were visiting our relatives in another part of the country. It had been a long time coming (as we all know) and health issues were looming. We were hoping to encourage and support ‘auntie’ who is suffering from severe arthritis which was making life increasingly difficult for her and her husband. He too was not well and being cared for by her. Another uncle and aunt had invited us all for the meal.

The big news on arrival was that a hip replacement operation had been agreed upon that very morning and arrangements for it finalised with the help of their two daughters who also offered to take on the caring arrangements while both parents would be out of action for a while. What a great surprise and relief that a way forward had been found.

And there was more joyful news on that day: a young refugee woman we had befriended whilst she was anxiously awaiting the outcome of her asylum application, texted exuberantly that she had received permission to stay in the country for five years! When auntie heard about that she was moved to tears.

They say good things come in threes. So what, I wonder, is the third significant gift of that first family away-day after the latest national lock-down? I’m sure it was just that: to be able to meet up again, strengthen our relationships and be encouraged and fortified in the tasks ahead, which seem less threatening and more doable when we face them together. ‘Behold, I make all things new’ springs to mind. The pandemic is helping us to look at life with new eyes, perhaps with purified eyes.

My lentil patties arrived as a multi-layer vegan burger with chips and salad and tasted so good that I decided to try cooking some myself!

Ingredients:

▶ 250g cooked, drained brown lentils (or 400g tin)

▶ 50g flour

▶ 1 egg

▶ 3 finely chopped spring onions

▶ 1 tsp turmeric

▶ ½ tsp cumin

▶ seasoning, oil, water

Method

Add flour, seasoning, spices and egg to the lentils and mix well. Add the spring onions and two or three tablespoons of water, stir well again. Using an ice cream scoop drop equal quantities of the mixture into a little hot olive oil and fry for four minutes on either side on medium heat. Enjoy!

 [See the article in full PDF edition on page 22]

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