Lentils…have you tried them? Until I started a plant based lifestyle.. I would of said No..but now.. they are a great staple to my diet..This is a versitile little bean…according to Wikipedia…With about 30% of their calories from protein, lentils have the third-highest level of protein, by weight, of any legume or nut, after soybeans and hemp. Proteins include the essential amino acids isoleucine and lysine, and lentils are an essential source of inexpensive protein in many parts of the world, especially in West Asia and the Indian subcontinent, which have large vegetarian populations. Lentils are deficient in two essential amino acids, methionine and cysteine. However, sprouted lentils contain sufficient levels of all essential amino acids, including methionine and cysteine.
Lentils also contain dietary fiber, folate, vitamin B1, and minerals. Red (or pink) lentils contain a lower concentration of fiber than green lentils (11% rather than 31%). Health magazine has selected lentils as one of the five healthiest foods. Lentils are often mixed with grains, such as rice or small pasta, which results in a complete protein dish.
Lentils also have some anti-nutritional factors, such as trypsin inhibitors and relatively high phytate content. Trypsin is an enzyme involved in digestion, and phytates reduce the bio-availability of dietary minerals. The phytates can be reduced by soaking the lentils in warm water overnight.
Lentils are a good source of iron, having over half of a person’s daily iron allowance in a 100g serving
Now with stats like those..what’s not to love!!!
One of the great things about lentil..is they don’t have a strong flavor..so you can use them in many ways..they will take on the flavor of the dish and complement it..
Today I made a pot of lentils.. one bag is 16 ounces of lentils.. first you have to put them in a strainer and rinse them.. looking for small pebbles…rinse well.. lentils do not need to soak like beans do..which is nice when you forget to soak the beans the night before!! After rinsed put in large pot with 6-8 cups of water.. bring water to a boil and then turn down heat to low add lid to pot ..but only set it sideways on the pan.. so that the steam can be let off.. I added one large onion chopped fine to my beans and one green pepper finley chopped…add them once the water comes to a boil, along with 4 tablespoons of black pepper. let cook ..about 15-20 minutes..if needed add more water..
at this point they are a good to eat as a side dish..but I wanted to do more with mine..so I made lentil sloppy joeys..and lentil meatloaf as well as Mexican chile relleno’s!! I know I have been one busy gal today!!!
Here are my recipes..fill free to give them a try.. but if you post them.. please don’t post the recipe..but only a link to me back here on my blog.. thanks I worked hard on these!
Lentils sloppy joeys
One cup of cooked lentils ( with the green peppers and onions in them)
add the following
1 T Paprika
1/2 tsp Garlic powder
1/2 tsp Chili powder (chipotle chili powder is good in this)
1/2 tsp dried Marjoram
1/2 tsp dry mustard
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp Black pepper
mix into the beans..
then add 3 Tablespoons of tomato paste
mix into the bean mixture
add 1/4 cup of water..and cook over low heat until throughly mixed and hot and bubbly..
it’s ready to eat!! Put on a whole grain bun or try a whole grain tortills…yummo!!!
add the following
1 cup chopped onions
2 Cups shredded carrots
1 C five grain ceral by Bob’s Red Mill
1/2 Cup chopped mushrooms
2 Tablespoon chopped garlic
2 Tab mustard
1 tablespoons vinegar
1 can fire roasted garlic tomatoes
mix everything together.. and place into two loaf pans.
Glaze for top:
one can tomatoe paste
4 Tables guava2 tablespoons dried onion OR use 2 T Onion powder
mix well and put on top of the meatless loaf.
bake at 350 for 30-40 minutes
let loaf cool before cutting enjoy with somve vegan gravy over the slice of meatless loaf..or a slice of meatless loaf topped with whipped potatoes or even cauliflower potatoes..
I saved the best for last..
Mexican chile relleno’s..these are out of this world!
take 4 chile poblano peppers and put on a rack under the broiler..
watching closely ..because they will burn quickly…turn each pepper and let the broiler roast the skin on all sides…remove when all sides are done and place in a paper bag..let alone for about 30 minutes..the steam in the bad will soften the peppers and make them easier to handle. Once they are cool remove from bag
and slice the pepper length wide do that you can stuff the pepper..see picture..then you need to carefully remove all of the seeds. Fill the open cavity of the pepper with the cooked beans..add nutritional flakes or shredded vegan cheese..and bake at 350 for 20-30 minutes. this little baby’s are wonderful! When you eat it.. cut through the pepper and get pepper and beans in each bite! The pepper has a little bit of a kick and it out of this world! Great Mexican dish.. this dishes are worthy of Company and even inlaws! Add some of your favorite sides and you will have a wonderful dinner…even a non vegan would enjoy!
I believe these chili Relleno’s can convert a meat eater in a minute! The lack nothing! In fact My son prefers them to the meat version!!! Knock your self out…try all of the recipes here..and have a cookpff like I did.. BON APPETIT !