Sunday, June 26, 2011

Lovely Lentils, Plus a Whole Foods Trick


As I was just sitting down to eat my lunch, (I'm home from church alone because of more issues from the dreaded cleanse. Sore throat, hoarse voice, and chest congestion. I'm crossing my fingers that this is the end of my detox issues.)  I thought to myself, "This is just so good, it has to be shared with my blog buds. (The real secret was that I wanted to play with my fun camera!)

Anyways, I made a huge salad last night and almost always enjoy the leftovers for my lunch the next day.

It was beautiful, healthy, full of raw veggie goodness, and truly filling.

red leaf lettuce
yellow bell pepper strips
radishes, thinly sliced
red onion, thinly sliced
carrot rounds
marinated artichoke hearts, quartered.

What really gave this salad a boost was the lentils I added.

Lentils are such a good source of protein and iron. Great for adding to a lunchtime salad or wrap just for this purpose. They take a lot less time to cook than other dried beans or legumes and they hold their shape nicely after cooking, too. They added such a power-punch of flavor to my salad that there really was no need to add any dressing- just a little splash of red wine vinegar and olive oil. Plus, salt and pepper, of course. 




A couple weeks ago, I made a pot of Indian Dahl (lentil stew or pottage). 

2 cups green or red lentils
4 cups water
6 garlic cloves, minced
1 onion, diced
1 t. coriander
1 1/2 t. sea salt
1 t. red pepper flakes
1 t. turmeric
2 t. cumin

In a little coconut or olive oil, saute the onion until softened and golden. Add the garlic near the end. Add the seasonings, stir and cook briefly to allow them to lose their oils. Add the water and the lentils. Bring to boil, and then reduce heat and simmer for 45 minutes or until lentils are softened. You may need to add more water, so watch occasionally. You may also mash or puree part to make it more of a "gravy". Adjust the seasoning if necessary.

The lentils will taste better the next day, and you'll be amazed at the brighter color you'll see that comes from the turmeric. Since I made a big batch, there was enough for leftovers and then some to spare.

*Now, I have a little trick that makes healthy, whole food eating easy and convenient. Whenever I cook time consuming-slow cooking whole grains or legumes for dinner (It's often brown rice, quinoa, from dried white and black cooked beans, and lentils) or just for this purpose, I'll place a serving size in a small ziplock bag or other storage container and put it in the freezer (in its own separate container, so as not to be lost) to enjoy later on when it's just me. I make up as many bags as I can- whatever I don't think will be used up in the next few days.

That's what I did with the extra Dahl. Really glad I did.

Enjoy!

2 comments:

  1. I loved lentils1 I was amazed how practical they are! Great tips! I hope you feel better soon!

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  2. no one in my family likes lentils but me. I should do this though - just for me :)

    p.s. - hope you are feeling better.

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