YUM - lentil quinoa curry YUM! (A Tasty Thursday blog)

Okay, so it's Saturday when I'm finally getting around to scribing this one. Life happens, ya know?

I'm doing this 21 day program that is VERY food intense. It's all about resetting your body from the inside out, and no exercise (in terms of hardcore exercise, I mean - walks and stretching are very much encouraged) allowed. It's been great in a lot of ways, and superbly difficult in others. I'm on the homestretch, with 2 days left. It's a mental discipline the likes of which I have not really had in a long time.

One piece that is not difficult is the food. Well, it's not hard to EAT. It's different ingredients than most of us eat on a regular basis. Different ways of preparing those ingredients. Shopping and prepping takes longer when you're not as familiar with the recipes.

The recipes themselves? They're delicious. Gorgeous (food photography worthy for sure) and just as delicious as they are pretty.

This is one of them, or an adaptation thereof. The original recipe calls for raw quinoa that you cook in the liquid, but I'd rather prep the quinoa all at once for the 2 weeks I'm allowed to eat grains and then just create as I go along. It saves time. And the original recipe has the spices just being stirred into the liquid, which (sorry) will NOT actually give you any real curry flavor. And the zest and lemon juice go in the cooking stage (again, waste of flavor!)

I also flat out refuse to do things like 2 TBS of red pepper. That's 2 TBS of raw red pepper, the vegetable, not 2 TBS of the red pepper flakes. Seriously? Let's USE the vegetable, shall we?

This works. It works as a single recipe, as a doubled or tripled one. It tastes better the day after you make it. You could freeze it. You could modify the heck out of it. And it tastes good hot, cold, or in between (hello picnic or potluck!). 

Try it. It'll reset your brain to delicious.

Curry-spiced lentil quinoa pilaf. 

RECIPE for lentil quinoa YUM

The power of ONE (serves 2-4 as a side dish)

  •  1 each: onion, pepper, carrot, celery stalk
  • 2 garlic cloves. Sorry.
  • 1 cup cooked lentils, 1 cup cooked quinoa
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 tsp each: paprika, cumin, ginger
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  •  1 TBS olive or coconut oil
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 handful fresh mint or parsley, or other preferred green herb

METHOD:

  • Chop vegetables and mince herbs. Mince or press garlic.
  • In a saute pan, heat the oil until shimmery. Add in the veggies (no garlic yet), starting with the onions. 
  • When the veggies are starting to soften, stir in the garlic and the spices. Stir and cook until you can smell the spices, then pour in the water. Stir to combine and let simmer while you get the rest of the stuff ready. You'll want the veggies to be becoming islands in the water when you're done.
  • Put the lentils and quinoa in a large bowl. Zest the lemon into the grains, then squeeze the lemon juice in too.
  • When the veggies are sufficiently islanded, turn off the heat and pour the veggies and liquid into the bowl with the lentils etc. Stir to combine, then add in the fresh herbs. Stir again.