Tip #3 - Love RedLentils
Yeah yeah..you may be saying. Many of us may know about all the amazing benefits to eating a whole foods diet and lots of greens. Sounds great in theory, but how can we actually we make a seasonal whole foods lifestyle practical and delicious?
So I set out to see if the "impossible" could be possible :-) This is the kind of challenge that I LOVE! Using the 5 Secrets to Everyday Healthy, I explored ways to make whole plant-based Spring cuisine convenient, easy, quick, affordable and delicious.
Above: Produce Items from the Spring Produce Shopping List. Photo compliments of Richard Giordano Photography
After much experiment delicious successes and some disasters ~ these are a necessary part of any creative process, I have developed quick and delicious recipes from for your everyday from the Everyday Pantry Shopping List and Spring Produce Shopping List. Over the next few days, I will share with you my top three tips for making Spring into Summer Cuisine practical AND delicious to give you GLOW on the inside and out. The first is LOVE red lentils.
Red Lentils Give you GLOW
Not only are red lentils practical, that they give you inner GLOW. Red lentils are high in an amino acid (building blocks for protein) called tryptophan which is a precursor to serotonin ~ the happy neurotransmitter. In order to feel good we need to get the nutritional building blocks from foods so that our physical bodies can feel positive emotions.
To celebrate the coming of warm weather, red lentils got spring makeover with the addition of affordable organic canned tomatoes, fresh ginger, cumin and swiss chard. Ginger is a powerful herb for cleansing liver and boosting immune system. Cumin, one of my fav versatile spices, helps your body to properly digest legumes to give you optimal energy.
Recipe for Spring RedLentilDelicious Soup
(Remember Ginger and Swiss Chard also LOVE each other in green smoothies :-) Learning what flavours pair well together will help your learn the secret of making everyday healthy delicious!
1 1/2 cup red lentils
5 cups filtered water
2 tbsp coconut oil
2 tbsp fresh ginger, grated and minced
2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp coriander (optional)
3 - 4 garlic cloves
1 can organic tomatoes (pssst.. these are affordable!)
2 cubes high quality vegetarian soup stock (my favourite is New Harvest Organic Soup Stock)
3 1/2 cups swiss chard, minced (do not skimp on this ingredient! ;-)
sea salt to taste
Garnish: freshly squeezed lemon juice, cold pressed olive oil, nutritional yeast and freshly ground black pepper
(1) Grate ginger and mince garlic before you begin.
(2) Heat pot on medium and add coconut oil.
(3) When oil melts, gently sautee ginger, garlic and spices until well blended with a bit of sun dried sea salt.
(4) Add red lentils and mix them well into the spice mixture.
(5) Add water, tomatoes and soup broth and bring to a boil. Let simmer for 15 – 20 minutes until cooked.
(6) Add swiss chard and let sit on low for 2 – 3 minutes.
(7) Garnish with lemon juice, a drizzle of olive oil, nutritional yeast and black pepper. Enjoy
Stay tuned for tip #2 and tip #1 :-)
~ Julie Beyer is a Whole Foods Chef and Instructor in Vancouver BC and is currently studying to become a Registered Holistic Nutritionist. Join Julie Beyer on her journey to discover how to apply the 5 Secrets for Convenient, Quick, Easy, Delicious and Affordable of Everyday Healthy.
~ You can find Julie Beyer's For the Love of Food on Facebook and Twitter for regular tips on healthy eating, nutrition, recipes and more..