Monday, July 13, 2015

Stewed Coconut Lentils

This week in Louisville has been cloudy, stormy and completely absent of sunshine. Wanting something  to brighten the mood, I created this recipe. It's warm, comforting, savory, sweet, nutty and a perfect protein addition to a variety of meals.  Lentils are an incredibly nutrient-rich source of protein and really inexpensive.

Undercooked beans and legumes can be difficult for the body to digest, so stewing them is a great option for people not used to cooking legumes/beans because it ensures that they will be fully cooked and ready for the body to soak up their nutrition!

I love this dish because it covers a lot of my nutritional points in one dish; protein, complex carbohydrates, fiber and fat (from the coconut milk) are all present. Because of this,  I recommend enjoying these lentils as a topping for steamed greens or salad, or alongside your favorite vegetable dish. If needing more calories, you could stir in a cooked whole grain like quinoa or brown rice.

Stewed Coconut Lentils
By Bailey West, B.S. Nutrition/Dietetics
Serves 2 - 4

2 Roma tomatoes, diced
3 shallots, sliced
2 cups vegetable broth, low sodium (+ more for sautéing)
1 cup lentils
1/4 cup full fat coconut milk
2 T nutritional yeast

1. Chop the shallots and tomatoes. Sauté vegetables in medium sized pot in some vegetable broth on medium high heat, stirring occasionally and watching that the vegetables don't burn but are breaking down well.

2. Add the lentils and broth to the pot and bring to a rolling boil. Then reduce heat to simmer and place a tight fitting lid on the pot. You will need to check on these periodically and stir occasionally, but they should simmer for around an hour.

3. After an hour, stir in the coconut milk and nutritional yeast. Simmer for an additional 15 - 20 minutes, adding extra broth or water if needed. Let cool and enjoy!

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