I recently started trying some vegan dishes, mostly because my mom has been eating a vegan diet to see if it will help ease some of her inflammation-related health issues (hi, Mom! *waving*). I am actually trying the recipes not because they are vegan, but more because they just sound delicious!
However, I do believe that a plant-based diet has its benefits, and although I am not planning to go completely vegetarian or vegan at the moment, I am definitely trying to incorporate more plant-based meals into our dinner plans. So far, this one has been one of our favorites!
Now, before I talk about this dish, in the spirit of full disclosure I will confess that Thing 2 did not like this at all. It has tomatoes, it has a little spicy kick (which the rest of us love), and overall it is just not something that he would immediately take to. I knew that even before he tried it.
However, I will keep serving this dish periodically, because it really is so flavorful and I think he will eventually come around! In our house, if you don’t like the dinner, you are not generally required to clean your plate, but you are required to eat at least some of what is served.
As I always say (and the boys are probably sick of hearing), eating something you don’t like will not kill you! Sometimes we need to eat things even if they are not our favorites, just because they are good for us and we need the nutrition for our bodies to function properly. (Although Thing 2 is not completely convinced of that, I am sure!) And you never know, you may end up surprising yourself and not disliking something as much as you think you will!
This recipe was adapted from Our Best Bites, whose recipe was adapted from a Weight Watchers recipe. This meal is great if you want a big bowl of flavor without the guilt! Each generously sized serving is around 100 calories.
It is also really filling and super-nutritious! Did you know that lentils are actually little nutritional powerhouses? Besides being a great source of fiber, they also provide B vitamins, protein, iron, and more! So this recipe is a good opportunity to start to work more lentils into your family meal plan, which is good for everyone!
- 2 cups red lentils
- 10 ounces fresh spinach (can substitute frozen, if needed)
- 2 cups frozen cauliflower
- 15 ounces diced tomatoes (1 can)
- 1 onion (chopped)
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- 4 cups vegetable broth
- 2 tablespoons curry paste (I used mild)
- 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
- Combine all the ingredients except for the lime juice and cilantro in the slow cooker.
- Cook on low for 6-8 hours.
- Stir in lime juice and cilantro and serve.
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