HOME > Chowhound > Los Angeles Area >


favorite lentil dish?

I think the last time I had lentil was at the Patinette Cafe in soup form a couple of months ago. I figured that even Patina-run restaurants normally can't *ruin* soups and gave it a shot. Since it was Patina-esque food, I can't really say it was particularly memorable; I think the soup was lukewarm (a pet peeve of mine, but let's not get into that).

Come to think of it, the last time I had lentil was about a week and half ago. The soup at the 101 Cafe was even worse than the one at Patinette. I must've added every condiment at the table, and even those didn't help. Not one whit. Don't ever get soup there!

In any case, like the spinach/artichoke dip thing, lentils may not necessarily be something I would normally seek out in an area with such vibrant produce, but I sometimes miss the things I ate in that awful New England cold...

So, what's your favorite dish featuring lentils in the city? Is it available all-year round (and thus something I'm able to have now) or is it seasonal? I've noticed that the curried (and yet rather bland) lentil soup isn't in rotation as heavily at Clementine's as it had been in previous cooler months.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Hands down the lentils at Cobras and Matadors. I love that dish.

    3 Replies
    1. re: OliveBelle

      Absolutley! The lentils are cripsy and delicious- how do they do that?

      1. re: OliveBelle

        AMEN! Forget that it's the best lentil dish, it's one of the best meals period. Even if you don't like lentils, it's AMAZING. Like nothing you've ever had.

        1. re: OliveBelle

          So funny this was the first response. It was EXACTLY what I thought of as soon as I saw the topic.

        2. The rice and lentils side dish at Magic Carpet. I like it mixed with peas but either way it's addictive, a must order no matter what the main dish.

          1 Reply
          1. re: PayOrPlay

            this dish is called "mejadara"! They also make a great version at Carnival in Sherman Oaks.

          2. Lentil salad with goat cheese and pumpkin seeds at Ammo, and second the lentils at Cobras and Matadors.

            1. I've gotta agree. I also like the green lentil salad at Joan's on Third.

              1. I love the red lentil dish at Messob Ethiopian restaurant. It's called Yemiser Wot. More like a spicy stew than a soup, but so good. http://www.messob.com

                1. Lentil soup at the Nook bistro. It's good - by the cup or trough. They have lots of other good things, too, of course.

                  1. Absolutely agree on the crunchy lentils at Cobras & Matadors. Last time we went the dish got ordered three times as people couldn't get enough!

                    1. Seared ahi tuna encrusted (smothered?) with a cucumber lentil puree at BISTRO 561.

                      1. And I've got to agree about that lentil salad at AMMO. Especially with a glass of Gruner Veltliner.

                        1. I had a great lentil and beet salad at Granita, which is now closed.

                          Lentil salad at Mimosa was very traditionally French-made; unfortunately, it had onions, which I don't like.

                          1. best lentil dish i've had is at the himalayan/ tibetan place in pasadena. the lentils are all ground up into a soup that has flavors of caraway and bay leaf and pepper.
                            i love lentils and i love this soup.
                            (available year round)

                            1. Ford's Filling Station has a tasty curried lentil salad.

                              1. They used to serve a great pasta with lentils at Locanda Veneta, although I have not been there in quite a while...

                                1. the fantastic green lentil salad served at ibex ethiopian restaurant in inglewood.
                                  they only make it sporadically, so i generally will call to confirm that they have it before making the drive.

                                  normally, any good ethiopian restaurant will have an array of good lentil dishes.

                                  1. OMG, hadn't realized how many people love the crispy lentils with serrano ham at Cobras & Matadors. sometimes that's the only reason i'm there. i had no idea i liked lentils until i went there. either did some friends from santa barbara. they weren't too keen on the dish but after one bite, they said let's get another. i would love to know how they make that dish. sometimes it has too much balsamic or too crispy, sometimes just right.

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: luswei

                                      lentil donuts at some vegeterian indian place in chicago and I'm not even a vegeterian.

                                    2. My favorite lentil dish is the curried lentil salad at Ford's Filling Station.