It Doesn’t Get Any Easier …….
Trying to stick with quick recipes, until we move, is exactly what I did when it comes to the recipe I will be sharing with you today. The cook time takes almost an hour, but it is the prep time that is important, and that only takes about 10 minutes! I was in the middle of painting trim when I threw this together, and left it to simmer on the stove while I finished up. You can’t beat a hands of meal like that. Especially when it only takes 4 main ingredients! The rest of the ingredients are pretty much pantry staples from your spice rack. In all reality, most people might already have the veggies on hand!
What I really like about this recipe, or the main ingredient, is what a complete food it is. By themselves lentils have 10 grams of protein per 1/4 cup. They appear to be high in carbs, but thanks to a whopping 11 grams of fiber, the net carbs are only 9 grams. Because of all the veggies that pumped this recipe up there are only 70 calories per half cup, 7 grams of protein, 8 grams of fiber, and 63% of your daily allowance for vitamin A.
I have made lentils quite often in the past, you will find them a lot in Eastern dishes, and it always seemed a bit more complicated. This time I decided to go the simple, yet flavorful route, and they turned out amazingly earthy, but sweet, with just a bit of a bite at the end. Generally, I would take the time to sauté the onions and garlic, but chose to skip that step this time. Sometimes simple is best, and this is one of those times.
The only tips I can really give on this recipe are super simple. 1. Make sure you sort your lentils, look for any pebbles that may have gotten in there during processing. You don’t want to be in the middle of a nice big bite of food and chomp down on a little rock. 2. Rinse the lentils. I know not everyone does it, but think of all of the dust, and nastiness that could be on them. So, give them a quick rinse while you are sorting them in the colander. 3. Remove the bay leaf. While the bay leaf adds flavor, it can pose a small danger to your throat, or intestines if accidentally swallowed. I guess the risks are minimal, but have occurred. My mom always removed them from the food once it was cooked, so I do as well.Lentils make a great main dish on a cold day, or a perfect accompanying side dish to any of your favorite stars. I’ve even gone as far as to use them as meat substitutes in tacos, and other veggie dishes. The beauty of these little babies is that they are versatile, and take on the flavor of just about anything you put in with them. I like to eat mine as the main dish with a side salad. Super simple, super filling. No matter how you choose to eat them, throw a pot on the stove, go about your business, then you can dish up a bowl, sit back, relax, and enjoy!
How do you eat your lentils?
Do you use them as a vegetarian dish?
Lentils & Veggies
By Angie Gouchenour
1 ½ cups lentils (dry) – sorted and rinsed
1 ¼ – 1 ½ cups (3-4 medium) carrots – peeled and chopped
1 cup yellow onion – chopped
3 garlic cloves – peeled and diced
½ teaspoon sea salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
½ teaspoon turmeric
1 bay leaf
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
4 cups hot water
In a colander rinse, and sort, the lentils. (It is rare, but check for any little pebbles)
In a large pan combine the lentils, chopped carrots (I like mine fairly large), onions, garlic, sea salt, black pepper, turmeric, bay leaf, cayenne pepper, and hot water
Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce to medium low and simmer uncovered for 50 – 60 minutes stirring occasionally until the lentils are soft and almost all of the water is gone
Remove from the heat and serve, or store in the refrigerator in a sealed container (This dish can also be frozen)
½ cup = 70 calories