>> Thursday, March 19
I looooove lentils. LOOOOOOOOVE them. All colors, shapes, sizes, and preparations. Which is probably why I can’t really manage to discriminate when it comes to creating Indian lentil dishes. Kichiri is ‘supposed’ to be made with red lentils, which is fantastic, but I wanted black lentils today, so that’s what I made. Continuing the blasphemy, I added nutritional yeast to imitate the consistency of red lentils. Recipe-sticklers beware, it was sinfully good and I don’t regret a moment of it.
The roasted carrot hash was half glorious inspiration and half poor planning-Having seen the roasted carrot dip on Just Bento, I thought it would be a perfect spread for the yummy cornbread my roommate just cooked up. After roasting the carrots, I remembered for the 100th time that we broke the food processor a few months ago. Huh. Carrots are not very mortar and pestle friendly. I used a bread knife to hack them into tiny pieces, and tried anyway, but the slippery little suckers still evaded all mushing attempts and just squirmed around my mortar mischieviously. Confounded, I tossed them into a bowl and drizzled balsamic vinegar and bragg’s over them, tossed, and tasted-WOAH that’s good!
The mustard sprouts and steamed chickpea sprouts really topped off the simple kichiri and tangy carrots. I steamed the chickpea sprouts for about 10 minutes on the lowest heat to get them tender and served them still warm over everything. So-oh-ohhhhh good. I ate two helpings and packed more for dinner, because with this good of a taste, repetition is a blessing!
Note: for the record, this meal was so satisfying I couldn’t manage to eat any more for dinner. The magic of sprouts, veggies, lentils and rice is that it’s absolutely everything you need and want, all in one delectable bowl.
1 leek, sliced into rounds
1 small red onion, roughly chopped
1 cup brown rice, long or short grain
¾ cup beluga lentils
3 cups water
½ tsp cardamom powder, or 4 whole pods
1 tsp turmeric powder
3 cloves garlic, chopped (or some garlic powder-I admit it, I used powder today…)
1 tsp finely chopped ginger root
1 tbsp nutritional yeast
½ tsp cinnamon powder
2 tbsp oil
- Heat the oil in a saucepan over medium-low heat and add the onions and leek. Cook, stirring, until they are tender and shiny.
- Add the spices, garlic and ginger, continuing to stir. Scrape the bottom of the pan if it starts to stick, and just keep stirring for about a minute.
- Add the lentils and rice, still stirring, for 1 more minute.
- Add the water, cover, bring to a boil, and reduce heat. Cook for 30 minutes or until almost all the water is absorbed and everything is fully cooked.
- Stir in the nutritional yeast. There should be a little liquid left to create a saucy consistency with the yeast-if needed, add a drop more water, and you will get a wonderfully thick mush as it cools on the plate, stiff enough to stay on the spoon when you turn it sideways.comfort food consistency!
Rosemary Roasted Carrot Hash
1 very large sprig of rosemary
a pinch of salt
2 tsp bragg’s or tamari
2 tsp balsamic vinegar
Preheat the oven to 350 F (175 C).
Wash the carrots and chop them into large chunks. Sprinkle them with a bit of salt, set the rosemary on top, and wrap it all in a piece of foil. Bake for 30 minutes, or until tender.
After they have cooled for a moment, use a large knife to dice the carrots into very small pieces. Minced might be the word. Toss them with the vinegar and bragg's and serve over or beside your main course, warm or cool. In the summer, we’ll have to revisit this with fresh basil leaves chopped up in it…