Lentils are a nutritious legume with a flavour distinct from the other beans in its family. As with other types of beans, however, they are a nutritional powerhouse! Packing 15 grams of fibre per cup, lentils supply more than half of the daily minimum of 25 grams. They are also high in protein (18 grams), iron (1/3 the daily requirement), very low fat (less than one gram) and low in sodium if you cook them yourself. If substituting canned cooked lentils for lentils cooked from dried, give them a good rinse to get rid of excess sodium.
Baking lentils is an easy way to prepare a hot dinner without standing over the stove. Raw lentils are mixed with spices and vegetables, then covered and baked. The consistency is thicker than a stew but still leaves some juices to be mopped up with a crusty bread.
Alternatively, spoon some mashed potatoes on top and create a lentil version of Shepherd’s Pie.
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Even without the marjoram and sage, this recipe still tastes great.
Serve with a peppery side salad, leafy greens, and crusty bread.
Vegan Baked Lentils
• 1 ¾ cups lentils
• 2 ¼ cups water
• 2 onions, chopped (Here are some great onion choppers for you!)
• 2 cups canned diced tomatoes
• 2 carrots, sliced
• ½ cup celery, sliced (optional)
• 1 green pepper, chopped (optional)
• 1 tsp. salt
• ¼ tsp. pepper
• 1/8 tsp. marjoram
• 1/8 tsp. sage
• 1/8 tsp. thyme
• 1 bay leaf *
• 2 tsp. chopped parsley
• Optional garnish: sliced avocado (with an avocado slicer) or grated Swiss cheese (with a cheese grater)
Preheat oven to 375° F.
1. Combine lentils, water, spices, onions, garlic (Here are some great garlic presses for you!), and tomatoes in a 9×13 baking dish.
2. Cover tightly and bake for 30 minutes.
3. Stir in carrots and celery and bake, covered, for another 40 minutes.
4. Stir in optional green pepper and parsley.
5. *Remove bay leaf before serving.
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