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Green Fed

a blog about a girl who decided eating plants was the way to go

Category Archives: lentils

Our family loves lentils, and I’m always scouring cookbooks and websites for awesome recipes.

This is one recipe I’m definitely planning on making this week.  It looks absolutely delicious!

Ancho Lentil Tacos from Post Punk Kitchen (the same lady who wrote one of my faves, Veganomicon)

Lentils are totally awesome (and INEXPENSIVE)!

A few facts about Lentils:

Lentils are low in calories and high in nutrition. Eating them at least once a week is a great way to add the health benefits of these tasty legumes to your diet.

Heart Health
Studies have found that people who eat high fiber legumes like lentils have a much reduced risk of heart disease. The high levels of folate and magnesium in lentils also go a long way in protecting the heart.

Stabilize Blood Sugar
Due to their high fiber content, lentils help in regulating blood sugar by providing steady, slow-burning energy and balancing blood sugar levels.

High in Iron
Lentils are loaded with iron and are a great way to replenish the body’s iron stores, especially for people who don’t eat red meat like vegans and vegetarians.

B Vitamins
Lentils are a great source of B vitamins, most notably folate and niacin (B3). B vitamins are important for the healthy functioning of the nervous, digestive, and immune systems.

Lower Cholesterol
Lentils are a great cholesterol lowering food due to their high levels of fiber.

Protein Packed
Protein makes up 26% of the calories in lentils and they have the third highest level of protein than any other plant food. It’s no wonder that they’re a staple in many parts of the world. When combined with a grain such as rice, you have a complete protein in one meal!

Here’s one of our all-time FAVE lentil recipes.  It’s so incredibly flavorful and satisfying!

Lentil Salad (from Veganomicon)

4 cups vegetable broth

2 or 3 sprigs of thyme (I use dried thyme and it’s just as good- about 1 tsp dried)

2 bay leaves

2 cloves garlic, crushed

1/2 tsp tarragon (don’t leave this out- it’s such a great addition!)

1/4 tsp salt

1 cup uncooked French Lentils (I’ve used all types of lentils in this, and they are all great)

1 small red onion, chopped very finely (about 1/3 cup()

1 small tomato, seeded and diced (about 1/2 cup)

2 radishes, grated (about 1/3 cup)- I don’t use the radishes and it turns out fine

1 small carrot, grated (if using organic carrots, don’t even bother peeling)

Several pinches of ground black pepper

Dressing:

2-4 Tbsp olive oil (I always use grapeseed oil for my dressings)

1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar.

1 Tbsp Dijon mustard

1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice

1 clove garlic, minced

Bring the broth and seasonings to a boil in a medium-size saucepan.  Add the lentils and bring to a low boil.  Cover the pot with the lid tilted, allowing a little room for steam to escape.  Let cook for about 20 minutes (I usually check mine right around 15 mins to make sure they don’t over-cook).  The lentils should be soft enough to eat but still firm enough to not lose their shape.

While the lentils cook, stir together all the dressing ingredients in a mixing bowl.

Drain the lentils in a colander.  Let cool, giving the colander a few shakes every couple of minutes.  Once the lentils are lukewarm, remove the bay leaves, chunks of garlic, thyme (if using fresh).  Add the lentils to the dressing along with the onions, tomato and radishes, and toss to combine.  Season with salt and pepper to taste, cover and chill for at least half an hour.

When chilled serve over lettuce (we love it over spinach) with oil and vinegar on the side if you like.

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