Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Easy Lentil Pilaf Dinner



                               

Looking for a healthy gluten free main course or great side dish? A lentil pilaf is a perfect dish for the warmer weather since it tastes great at room temperature. Lentils are nutritional powerhouses that cook more quickly than beans , and do not need to be soaked overnight first. Perfect for dinner or summer parties;  this recipe is a keeper.


I thought of the idea to make a lentil pilaf when my friend Paula called me and asked me what could she make with some lentils she had purchased. She didn't want to make lentil soup and was trying to think of other ideas. When I thought of the lentil pilaf, it sounded so good, I figured I'd make a batch too.

                          

I like this recipe because:

  • Pilaf is vegan,  fast and easy to make, and has lots of  nutritious raw chopped veggies and aromatic spices, yet lentils have a mild flavor that most people like.
  •  It's a great summertime entree or side dish when you don't want to turn on the oven. 
  • The lentils can be made in advance too and you can then just assemble the recipe the next day.
  • It's also an economical meal because a bag of lentils is usually less than a dollar. Can't go wrong with that.
  • If you like your pilaf a little more perky, you could add some salad dressing to it, like an Italian dressing or some lemon juice and olive oil. 
  • You could also add some chopped parsley, cilantro, chopped garlic or anything of your liking.
  • For a more filling meal ,eat the pilaf over quinoa, brown rice, or even GF noodles.





Did you know that eating lentils can help lower your cholesterol and help balance your blood sugar? 


Lentils are a real food from nature and only real food provides real health benefits. 

  • lentils are an excellent source of soluble and insoluble fiber which is known to help lower cholesterol and help manage blood sugar disorders.
  • In addition, lentils provide important minerals, B vitamins  and protein. 
  • Amazingly, they have practically no fat.
  •  There are about 115 calories in 1/2 cup cooked. 
  • Also, lentils are a good source of iron. 
  • So, don't forget to incorporate these nutritional powerhouses into your family's diet.

When is the last time you ate some lentils? Isn't it time you tried them again. This is a light, delicious, and satisfying recipe . Why not try it?


Ingredients
2 cups of cooked lentils, cooled ( cook according to package instructions) 
1/2 cup carrot, chopped fine
1/2 cup red pepper, chopped fine
1/2 cup cucumber, chopped fine
1/2 cup marinated artichokes, chopped
1/2 cup celery, chopped fine
1/4 cup chopped sweet  red onion, chopped fne 
1/2 cup chopped parsley ( optional) 
1 tsp. cumin powder
2 Tablespoons of marinade from the artichokes or
2 Tablespoons of Italian dressing or oil and lemon juice

Directions: 
Mix all ingredients in a large bowl. Toss and eat at room temperature


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In general, the excellent nutritional benefits of lentils make them well worth eating . They are very versatile and taste great in  soups, salads, vegetarian burgers and entrees which you can find additional recipes on my blog.

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6 comments:

  1. Sounds good! Well, I don't like celery, but if I substituted something else it would be good.

    Here are some of my favorite lentil recipes:
    Indian Red Lentils with Carrots
    Lentil Rice with 3 flavor variations
    Honey Baked Lentils

    By the way, we tried your Sweet Potato Black Bean Burgers a couple of weeks ago--they were great!

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  3. Looks delicious, with all those fresh and healthy ingredients mixed together with the lentils. I appreciate you promoting the healthy benefits of lentils. I will go through a burst of eating them a lot, and then taking a long break. I have a bag of them in the pantry and was just thinking I should make a batch to enjoy. This recipe encourages me to pull them out today! Thanks for linking to Food on Fridays!

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  4. Hi Judee,
    We will just love this dish. Thank you so much for sharing this awesome recipe with Full Plate Thursday. Hope you have a very special Mothers Day Weekend and come back soon!
    Miz Helen

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  5. This looks delicious and that it could be a meal all in itself! I do appreciate you sharing with Home and Garden Thursday,
    Kathy

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  6. This looks amazing, can't wait to make!!

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Thank you for your comment - I love the feedback and interaction

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