Monday, September 1, 2008

LENTILS……GREAT PROTEINS.

Lentils are a versatile protein, easily digested and simple to use. It freezes well and it can be used in many ways. You can make it into a spread, a stew, a vegetarian hamburger, a vegetarian loaf, salad, sprouts and great soups. There are brown, light colored and orange lentils. They need to be washed well and put into a strainer to get rid of the water. Then spread them on a towel and check carefully for stones or chips. You can store cooked lentils in small containers in the freezer. Do not freeze anything that is warm. Leave it out to cool properly.

Lentils need spices and herbs, condiments and different vegetables to give it structure in certain dishes. I add nuts and raisins to many dishes and as a spread, condiments are
Used according to your taste. These include mustard, pickles, tomato sauces, techina and curries.

LENTIL SPROUTS.
This is something for the kids. Soak and wash lentils well. Check for stones. Place the lentils in a porridge bowl and cover with a towel. Place in a dark cupboard. After a day, rinse with water and place in the cupboard again. After the third day, rinse well and they will have grown a lot, so place in the fridge in a covered dish. These can be used in fresh salads, on sandwiches, as an addition to stir fry, in soups and stews. They are great when you have an omelets or a tofu scrambled egg, stirred in for a minute on the flame. …Sprouts can be kept in the fridge for a few days.

LENTIL LOAF

Wash 500 grams of lentils. (About 17 ozs. Or 1.10 lbs). Wash and check that there are no stones and cook in a pot with half a teaspoon of salt. Cook until soft and drain. Take 3 cups of cooked lentils and three cups of cooked rice. Mix well.
Ingredients.
The lentils and rice, or mashed potatoes, are the base. Now we add the tastes.
Dice two medium sized onions and three garlic cloves (optional). Fry these in olive oil. Add salt and pepper, two medium size peeled and cubed tomatoes, one diced red pepper, one grated carrot and two small grated apples.
Mix the lentils, rice and onion mixture in a large bowl.
Add half a cup of crushed almonds, half a cup of chopped walnuts, two tablespoons chopped parsley, and half a teaspoon dried marjoram and celery. Add half a teaspoon paprika or curry. I find that kids love the curry taste. Salt and pepper are a must to throw in and now you can decide. I use three eggs to bind the dish. If you prefer not to use eggs, you can add one tablespoon of olive oil.
Mix well and let this chill in the fridge for an hour.
Use a baking dish with a lid, or a bread loaf dish. I find that by baking the mixture well it is great to serve as slices Looks good and tastes great. You can of course, roll into hamburger shapes and fry in oil. All you have to do it coat it with crumbs; I use crushed cornflakes or a mixture of sesame seeds and rice cereal. I crush it and use as a coating. Please understand that these ideas are mine that have been used time and time again. It works and it is tasty and practical. I believe that the less we mess with products that lie on shelves for months, the easier it is to digest what you cook.

I bake the lentils in a medium oven for thirty minutes. It will be brown when ready. The one without eggs, can be baked for a few minutes more. When slightly cool, it is easier to serve.
To serve hot. Serve with steamed green and yellow vegetables. I love the mix of ying yang and colors with cooked foods. Make a little dish of chutney, tomato spread or techina as an addition. I mix two tablespoons of raisins and coconut in a bowl. It is great with chutney. You can make this dish a day ahead and serve it hot.
To serve lentils cold.
You can slice the loaf and serve it in a bun, on a baked potato and with a fresh salad.. Be innovative with salad. Use radish cut up small, kohlrabi, spinach leaves, baby leaves, grated carrot and fresh parsley, spring onions and red or yellow peppers. I love salads that sparkle. They are of products in season, not tired and frozen.
When you make a sandwich with a slice of lentils for work, add some mustard and lettuce leaves. It is filling and great as a meal.

Freezing. I freeze the loaf when it is cold. I also slice and freeze each slice wrapped individually. Then you can use one at a time. Take a slice or two and place on an oven dish that is oiled with olive oil. Reheat.
Enjoy this protein and serve it to the kids with home made fries. These are potatoes cut up and steamed. Then put them in an oiled dish and bake in the oven. Better than chips in oil and taste fresh.

The rest of the lentils that were cooked can be added to soup or made into a paste to spread on toast.

LENTIL SPREAD.
Two cups of cooked lentils. Mash well.
Fry one large onion, half a teaspoon curry powder, salt and pepper, two tablespoons of tomato paste, one tablespoon of lemon juice, one tablespoon of honey, two crushed dates, dash of cinnamon and mix all. Cool and stir in one tablespoon of sesame seeds. Keep in the fridge for toast, crackers or on a baked potato. For a salad dressing, mix well with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Enjoy creative ways of eating. Puts a smile on your dial.
LENTIL SOUP.
This is Noel's lentil soup . It is terrific,
2 Tablespoons Olive oil.
2 onions
I cup brown lentils
4 tomatoes peeled and cut up. (Remove peels by dropping in boiled water for a few minutes)
1 tablespoon parsley, fresh and chopped up.
1 cup soft soaked chickpeas.
1 cup noodles, the thin type. 4 celery stalks, cut up small.
1 teaspoon ground ginger.
Pinch of turmeric.

Heat the oil and brown the onions. Add the celery and whole chickpeas. Add six and a half cups of boiling water. Cover and cook for 45 minutes. Then add parsley, tomatoes, turmeric, ginger and lentils and cook another fifty minutes. Finally add pepper and salt and noodles and cook

For five minutes more. Serve with a chunky slice of whole-wheat bread with a sprinkling of Parmesan cheese on top Enjoy……..

LENTIL STEW.
This is my daughter's recipe. Sel makes it and serves it with style and charm. ]
We love it and no matter how much Sel makes, we do it justice……………..

500 grams lentils (1.10lbs)
3 Tablespoons Honey
2 Tablespoons date spread.
2 Tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon dried soup powder, or crushed dried onions mixed with parsley and oregano flakes.
2 teaspoons curry powder
Half teaspoon oregano flakes. Half a teaspoon sweet paprika.
Soak the washed lentils overnight. Drain, Cook until softened. Drain.
Put the lentils in a pot and add all the ingredients and cover with water. Cook on medium flame for thirty minutes.
Serve with brown rice, mashed potatoes, couscous, quinoa and some green steamed vegetables.
This can be made ahead of time.

Have a great week and take time to think of how fortunate we are. Send healing to people who are not in the comfort of their homes, to the earth that is troubled and needs balance. Cherish our families and what we have.
LOVE and LIGHT RONA

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hi Rona
Once again you have the best ideas.
Cant wait to try them out
Thank you very much for sharing.

marcelle said...

Hi Mom
The Lentil Loaf is very good.
The rest are also so healthy and easy to make. Thanks a lot
MK xxx

Reader in Baton Rouge said...

Would like to say I very much enjoyed making the Lentil Loaf that you put up on the blog and my family loved it as well!
Thank you!
-fan from Baton Rouge, Louisiana

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