Lentils and peas
This hearty, Greek-inspired cold dish of lentils, tomatoes, olives, and tofu “feta” is easy enough to make for everyday meals, and impressive enough to serve on special occasions. It’s a nice dish to bring to potlucks, as well. Photos by Evan Atlas.
If you want to impress someone with a dal, make it this one. Don’t be afraid of the number of spices—it is quite simple to make. The spices and garlic are blended to a paste and fried in the oil. A hot sauce (chiles, garlic, and vinegar) in the tadka is another secret to getting the right flavor profile. Serve this as a part of a meal, or with rice or naan or other flatbread. Recipe and photos from Vegan Richa’s Indian Kitchen * © 2015 by Richa Hingle. Vegan Heritage Press, LLC. reprinted by permission.
Red lentils cook quickly, so they’re a good choice when you want a hearty, filling soup in little time. Adding a couple of cups of pumpkin or butternut squash puree adds to the orange-y goodness of this soup — and cauliflower and spinach contribute to its overall veggie-packed deliciousness. Serve this main-dish soup with a fresh flatbread and a simple salad. Photos by Evan Atlas.
For centuries, spices have been used to create delicious and nourishing meals. Aromatic herbs and spices, also known as carminatives, improve digestion and make zesty, globally inspired dishes. The key to making beans easier to digest is to cook them from scratch, adding sea vegetables like dulse along with carminative herbs and spices. Adapting this main course soup to the seasons is easy: You can use fresh tomatoes, summer squash, spinach, and eggplant in the summer; canned tomatoes, carrots, yams, or butternut squash in the fall and winter. Recipe excerpted with permission from Going Wild in the Kitchen,* by Leslie Cerier, © 2005, Square One Publishers, Inc. Photos by Tracey Eller.
Cold soups are one of my favorite ways to feel refreshed in the summer heat. What makes any cold soup even better for me is if it needs no cooking at all, like this one featuring ripe avocados and green peas. And it adds gorgeous burst of green to the table, as well. Recipe adapted from Vegan Holiday Kitchen. Photos by Susan Voisin.
Beans aren’t the only member of the legume family worth celebrating. Lentils, packed with fiber and protein, are just as nutritious. Plus they cook up—no soaking required—in only 15 to 20 minutes. A French ami shared her mother’s traditional recipe for lentil salad with me years ago. This simple salad, seasoned with a French vinaigrette, is classic dish in France. It makes a wonderful, protein-rich highlight of any meal. Because the flavors continue to meld, it’s also great the next day. Recipe from Plant-Powered for Life: Eat Your Way to Lasting Health with 52 Simple Steps and 125 Delicious Recipes, © 2014 Sharon Palmer. Reprinted with permission from The Experiment.
This lentil salad is unique, blending Indian flavors from the cumin and coriander with the Mexican flavors of mango and lime. One of the best things about salad is you can combine ingredients that you wouldn’t normally pair up, and it usually works wonderfully. French lentils, also known as du Puy lentils, are the best type of lentil to use in salads. Green, brown, and red lentils are perfect in soups and stews because they’re soft and tend to fall apart, while du Puy lentils work better in salads because they hold their shape well when cooked properly. All in all, a refreshing summery salad, with great sustenance from the lentils. Recipe and photos contributed by Sophia Zergiotis of Love and Lentils.
Here’s a simple soup of quick-cooking red lentils, embellished with tender greens. It’s a warming homemade soup you can have on the table in less than 45 minutes. Once you’ve done the onion-garlic sauté, there’s very little additional work to do! Serve with fresh pita, croutons, or crispy pita chips that you can crumble right into the soup. The recipe yields a flavorful but mild soup; see notes on seasonings following the recipe if you’d like to kick it up a few notches.