I got my first whiff of fall this past Saturday. Lucky brides got a perfectly lovely helping of mild temps and soft breezes. Autumn is just around the corner.
So, since I was in a fall-ish mood and it was cool enough to cook, I made a pot of lentils and rice. Lentils are one of the "super foods" and if you don’t believe me, I know you’ll believe Dr. Perricone (yes, Oprah’s Dr. Perricone) who lists beans and lentils as number four on his list. Low calories, high fiber, and darn yummy, too.
Never cooked lentils? It’s TRES easy. There are several kinds of lentils…I keep two kinds in the freezer at all times: green and brown. The green ones hold their shape when cooked properly and are best for lentil salads. The brown ones get smooshier when cooked and they’re the ones I use most since their prep is SO much easier. Here’s a quick, easy, healthy meal.
Lentils & Rice
1 cup brown lentils (#5011 in the bulk bins at the Co-op, green lentils are #5039, today I used 1/2 cup each)
1 cup rice (#5294 is SO pretty!! a mix of brown, wild, Wehani, and other varieties of rice…PLEASE promise you’ll never buy white rice again)
1 or two Rapunzel Vegan Veg Bouillon Cubes with Sea Salt & Herbs (one might be plenty for you, so start with one, add the other in bits to taste if necessary)
Wash the rice and lentils and put in a pot. Cover with water by about two inches. Bring to a boil, then turn down heat to a verrrry slow simmer. Cover and set your timer for one hour.
DING!! Stir up the lentils and rice and taste. Here’s where you make your seasoning adjustments. Is everything cooked enough? If not, add more water just to the top of the L&R and reset your timer for about 30 more minutes. Make a mental note of how long it took for your lentils to cook on your stove with your equipment for next time.
From The Other Super Foods Department– Yogurt. I’m not going to go on and on about super foods, but I’ve meant to tell you about Greek Gods Honey Yogurt for a long time. If you like yogurt, you will build an altar to Greek Gods Honey Yogurt. If you don’t like yogurt, try Greek Gods. My husband calls it ice cream. Yes, it’s loaded, even at 6 oz. per container, so it’s not the kind I can polish off in one sitting. I have a spoonful once or twice a day. It also comes in 24 oz. containers. Yogurt was always a staple at my house…I even made my own back in the day. But, when Lucerne tweaked their non-fat strawberry recipe, I couldn’t find another yogurt I liked. They were all too sweet, or the flavors tasted fake…Greek Gods was The Universe’s answer to my prayers. Find it at the Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op on Alhambra at S Street…I hear Raley’s, BelAir, and Nugget carry it, too.
Just So Ya Know–if you’re a label reader and a low-cal fan, AVOID ASPARTAME AT ALL COSTS. It’s a sugar substitute, and not a very good one, if ya ask me. But, frankly, it’s poison. I’ve meant to tell you about that, too, and the low-cal yogurt talk made me think if it. They’ll sneak aspartame into supposedly healthy foods, so watch the yogurt labels. And if you’re a big diet soda fan, you really need to read about it. Did you know that one of the side effects of aspartame ingestion is death?! :-O "Aspartame is the methyl ester of the dipeptide of two amino acids, phenylalanine and aspartic acid." Wha? Read pros/cons of aspartame on the ‘net and make your own decision.
The Dove Lady doesn’t need no stinkin’ smoked ham hocks or bacon in her lentils. And she loves sugar…just plain, ol’ real unadulterated sugar, like organic-raw-dried-granulated sugar cane juice. She thinks it’s prettier than white sugar, too.