At the turn of the year I decided to eat only plant-based foods for two weeks. Not quite veganuary, so I’m not going to shout too loudly about it, but one thing I will say is that I feel better than I have in a long time. I have more energy, I am so much more conscious of what foods I am putting in my body and I feel cleaner (believe me, I know how odd that sounds, but it’s true).
My new found dependence on plants means I’ve spent a lot more time thinking about plant-based recipes. Since it’s freezing in Scotland at the moment, there’s been a big emphasis on warm, filling meals to help battle the cold and keep my appetite satisfied for as long as possible. One particular meal that I keep coming back to is my spiced lentils with chick peas and spinach. A sort of cheat’s dahl, it’s quick, easy and delicious. It also freezes really well so I tend to make a huge batch so that there’s a load in the freezer for quick and easy post-work meals. Here’s what you need:
- 2 tsps of coconut oil
- 1 red chilli
- 2 garlic cloves
- 1.5 tbsps of garam masala
- 1.5 tbsps of ground cumin
- 1tsp of turmeric
- A thumb sized piece of fresh ginger
- 1.2 litres of vegan vegetable stock
- 550g of red lentils
- 1x 400g tin of chickpeas
- 175g of spinach
1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan before adding the diced onion, garlic, ginger and chilli. Saute until the onions have softened.
2. Add the spices to the saucepan, stirring constantly so that they don’t stick to the bottom. Once the spices have coated all of the vegetables, pour in the lentils, stock and chickpeas. Stir well and bring to the boil. Now reduce the heat and leave the pot to simmer for around 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
3. After 20 minutes, the lentils should be cooked through. Now stir through the fresh spinach, which will wilt naturally with the heat of the rest of the dish.
It’s that simple. 20 minutes to a heartwarming stew that’s healthy, nutritious and vegan. I could eat this dish every night of the week.
I’m looking for more vegan main dishes to try, so please send any suggestions you have my way – I look forward to seeing them!1 like