Lentil Soup – The Joy of Goodness!

 

‘PLANT BASED PROTEIN DIET’

lentils

Beluga Black Lentils

Lentil soup is a hearty soup made with small legumes known as lentils, which are similar to beans. The soup also includes other spices and vegetables. This soup is easy to make as a vegetarian or vegan  -very healthy dish!  Although there are many different recipes for making this soup, the basics are fairly constant across recipes….except for this one!
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INGREDIENTS

  • Beluga Black lentil 1 cup rinsed (and picked)
  • 2 Tbsp. Olive oil ( or sesame oil)
  • 1 Onion large ( up to 1 cup)
  • 1 Clove garlic – large
  • 4 cups water ( or stock)
  • 10-15 green pods of cardamom
  • 1 tea spoon cumin seeds
  • Ginger root 1 x 2 inches peeled chopped –  or grated
  • 1 carrot peeled & chopped
  • 1/8 tsp. Cayenne pepper .
  • 1/4 tsp. Salt

INSTRUCTIONS

  • In a frying pan with 2 inch sides (or dutch oven)
  • Add Oil
  • Add chopped onions (cook until translucent)  followed by 1 clove of chopped garlic
  • Add cumin* (fresh ground)
  • Add cardamon* (fresh ground seeds)
  • Add Cayenne pepper 1/8 tsp.
  • Add beluga black lentils
  • Add 4 cups of water, mix well
  • Bring to a boil then cover over medium heat, cook until lentils are cooked but not mush. About 20 mins
  • Add chopped ( or grated ) ginger, salt and chopped carrot. Cook for another 5-10 mins.


This is a thick soup. You may need to add a bit more water if you wish.
TIP: *Use a soft brush to get all the spice out of the mortar bowl  –  into the pot.
CARDAMOM: Cardamom pods vary in size. Loose cardamom in bulk stores may be dried out. Also, there are large and small pods. Use common sense when adding ‘fresh’ spices to your recipe.

Beluga Lentil Soup – Garnished with Avocado and a dollop of Greek  yogurt + a sprinkle of cayenne pepper (or paprika)

TIPS AND TRICKS
I always cook Beluga lentils in a separate pot for this recipe in order to save a portion for my Lentil  Butternut Squash Salad. I add 1 cup of cooked lentils to the soup ( plus the cooking water ) and the rest is capped for salads. I enjoy this salad very much with walnut oil.  Substitutes for butternut squash are acorn squash,  yams or pumpkin [ even chick peas ]. Sometimes, I make this Beluga lentil salad with  mango, red pepper and chopped sweet onions – with plenty of cilantro.

Beluga Lentil, Roasted Squash, Tomato and Cilantro Salad

NATIONAL LENTIL FESTIVAL
PULLMAN, WASHINGTON, USA

Pullman hosts this annual festivity every August, which recognizes the magically delicious legume and features the world’s largest bowl of lentil chili! Lentilfest.com

21st Legendary Lentil Cook-OFF:
Each spring, people send recipes from around the country. A panel of food experts evaluates the dishes and selects five finalists who are brought to the festival to prepare their dish for a panel of five celebrity judges. ( All 109 of this year’s recipes are available in a cookbook for sale for $5 at the festival and online. Hungry yet?)

LENTIL CHILI -It takes a canoe paddle to stir 350 gallons of lentil chili.

STORING LENTILS
I freeze my cooked lentils in glass jars. I find it is the safest method for preserving food. To learn more about lentils visit this site –> tasteinsight.com

INTERESTING FACTS About Beluga Black Lentil
Black lentils are called BELUGA because of their resemblance to caviar. A fun conversation at the dinner table. They have a warm, nutty flavor and keeps its shape, even during prolonged cooking. They are the most nutritious out of all the types of lentils. On the other hand, the red lentils, also called red ‘split’ lentils become a bit mushy while cooking. Similar to what you see with ‘split pea’ soup. In India, the lentil is known as dal or daal. [ The optical lens is named after the Latin word for lentil: lens. ]

LENTIL SOUP:  CURE FOR THE WINTER CHILL

Finding the balance in life – with lentils

 

Grilled Cauliflower -TRENDING

In Living Colour

Cauliflower Steak

What’s popular in Paris today is braised or grilled cauliflower. It started last summer (2018), when everyone was grilling ‘colourful’ cauliflower.  A cheerful and healthy choice. We are featuring purple cauliflower for the nutritional value.
Purple cauliflower has the same antioxidant: anthocyanin, which is also found in red cabbage and red wine. The trend towards gluten-free and dairy free helps support cauliflower. Food companies are capitalizing on the low-carb, gluten-free trend by using vegetables like cauliflower to replace flour, rice and other simple carbs. Mashed cauliflower (see recipe below) instead of mashed potatoes is a welcome change.

Slicing Cauliflower Steaks for the Grill

Spicy Herb Oil : Use this oil to baste your grilled cauliflower.
Add basil, parsley leaves, garlic, lemon zest, salt and oil to a food processor: emulsify.
Taste and adjust the seasoning if needed. It’s your basting oil, your taste buds. You never go wrong with fresh herbs. That’s the real secret.   Transfer the oil into a small jar or container. Make it hot (caliente) by adding  jalapeno and stir to combine. Baste the cauliflower with this oil mixture at the end of cooking.  Your Paleo  friends will applaud  your efforts.  Make enough grilled cauliflower to FREEZE and enjoy at a later date.

Colorful Grilled Cauliflower Trees -We Are Eating Healthy Today!

ADD FLAVOUR ‘when you kick it up a notch’: Click on -> Emeril Lagasse for his oil spice suggestions. Emeril  likes to add curry powder and/or cayenne pepper & garam masala to his basting oil  mixture instead of our  classic *basil, parsley and lemon mix*.  We are  all-embracing the healthy, exotic, eastern spices. Oven roasted instead of on the  grill works well for Emeril as he chooses flowerets for easy eating and coverage.  It’s all good, healthy and tasty!

Caliante (Hot) Basting Sauce  with ”Garam Masala’

BONUS recipe

CAULIFLOWER MASHED POTATOES
HEART SMART: This recipe  using ‘white’ cauliflower, cuts back on carbohydrates and starches in your diet  (part of the Paleo Diet Plan). . A healthy choice!  The big bonus is that some people can not tell the difference between your cauliflower mash and your traditional ‘starchy’ mashed potatoes  you have served for many years.

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Ingredients:

• 1 large head cauliflower
• 5 large cloves garlic, peeled
• ¼ – ½ cup light sour cream
• 1-2 Tablespoons unpasteurized butter
• 1/4 Tsp, Nutmeg
• Sea salt and black pepper to taste

DIRECTIONS

  1. Fill a four-quart stockpot with 1-2 inches of water and allow it to come to a boil.
  2. While water heats, wash and trim cauliflower and cut up the florets and stem.
  3. Place cauliflower and garlic into the pot, lightly salting. Boil 10 minutes, or until everything is tender. Drain out the water and transfer the garlic and cauliflower into a bowl . Use an electric hand mixer (or use a hand masher) to create your ‘smashed’ cauliflour.
  4. Add in butter, sour cream, salt, pepper and nutmeg. Mix until smooth and serve hot.

FREEZER TIME: 10-12 MONTHS. Cooked cauliflower can not sit longer than 2 hours before freezing or refrigerating for another 3-5 days. Properly stored, freezer cauliflower  will maintain best quality for 10 to 12 months. But will remain safe beyond that time.

Cauliflower has several properties that may help with weight loss. First, it is low in calories with only 25 calories per cup, so you can eat a lot of it without gaining weight. … As a good source of fiber, cauliflower slows digestion and promotes feelings of fullness.