Garlic & Sundried Tomato Lentil Dip

Garlic & Sundried Tomato Lentil Dip

Sometimes, only sometimes, do I get sick of chickpea hummus.

Sometimes, SOMETIMES, I forget that you can make dip out of whatever you want to.

We have a nice little shelf in our cupboard that is full of canned and dried beans, and nearly all of them are used for specific recipes… because its what I know well and it’s what I know every one likes. Black beans are for salad toppers, black bean burgers or black bean tortas. Kidney beans are also for salad toppings, re-fried beans, tacos or bean salads. Chickpeas are … also for salad toppings, for roasting, for hummus and for “tuna” salad sammiches. Lentils are for adding to spaghetti sauce and chillies. Etcetera, etcetera.

But WHAT IF I TOLD YOU you could make a bean dip out of any beans you liked?

…… You may likely say “Ah… duh?”

But if you didn’t… and OK even if you did… I thought I’d share a yummy little dip recipe using sundried tomatoes and my favorite legume… lentils!

Lentils are an eeeeexcellent source of folate (one cup of lentils can provide almost 90% of your daily recommended intake) and is also a pretty good source other vitamins and minerals like iron, manganese, thiamin and B6, among others. High in fibre, a relatively good source of protein and low in fat, the fact that I love them is just a bonus!

I personally think they make a great sub for ground beef in pasta sauce or in chilies (just don’t over cook them!) and it wasn’t until recently that I decided to try and see what kind of dip I could make outtuv’em! Here goes.

What You’ll Need

  • 1 cup of canned lentils (OR cooked from dry lentils work as well)
  • 5 pieces of sundried tomatoes (I buy the kind that are NOT soaking in a bath of oil)
  • Squeezed juice from half a lemon
  • 1/2 tbsp. coconut nectar (or coconut aminos…or soya sauce… or tamari…)
  • 1/2 tbsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1 cup of boiled water
  • 1/2 tbsp. evoo (extra virgin olive oil)
  • Salt (maaayyybbbeee if you wanna)

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What You’ll Need to do

FIRST you must chop your sundried toms into just slightly smaller pieces and get them swimming in a bowl of boiled water to soak.* You want to let them soak for about 5 minutes or so.

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THEN get your lentils in a… thingy… to blend. I use an emulsifier… because it’s less effort than taking out, and using, and cleaning my food processor but you could totally just whip out your processor if you don’t have an emulsifier.

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NEXT put aaaallll that stuff, save for your olive oil and salt, into the “thingy” along with your lentils. Be sure to reserve your now warmish reddish tomato infused soaking water.*

AND NOW YOU EMULSIFY, or food process… adding in that reserved tomato soaking water a tbsp at a time to help get it to a texture of your liking (I added about 2 tbsps.)

LASTLY pour in your olive oil and stir just by hand with a spoon. This step really just adds a slightly different kind of texture, and another layer of flavor, so if you’d like to keep this oil free, then by all means skip this step!

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Ok ACTUAL LASTLY. If you’re feeling it, you can also add a little extra salt to taste. You might find this dip flavorful enough, or depending on what you are pairing it with you might find you don’t want extra salt, but it’s your dip so do what you want!

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Oh and Enjoy!

*IF you can not find sundried tomatoes that are not already pre-soaked in oil, and you MUST use the oil soaked kind, then of course you can skip this step of soaking your toms. You also may choose to skip the last step of adding the olive oil if your dip already has the added oil from the sundried tomatoes.  Just be sure to have a couple tablespoons of water set to the side, to act as your watering down liquid to get those lentils to the right consistency!

Pro-ish Tip: Let your dip sit for between 10-20 minutes (or longer), if you have the time and/or the patience, to really let the flavor from all those powdered seasonings soak in and become nice a full!

 

 

 

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Pretty Impractical: The Internet’s Dressed up Food & A 6 min Meal Idea.

Pretty Impractical: The Internet’s Dressed up Food & A 6 min Meal Idea.

Do you ever find yourself scrolling through Instagram or Pinterest looking at healthy food posts for hours looking for inspiration?…. Just me?

Ok but do you find yourself looking at food ideas and skipping past ones that look super fancy, like a lot of work, or just not practical?

I know that sometimes I feel like recipe ideas or food posts are made specifically for people who already know a lot about food and how to cook, or assume you have all the time in the world to make dishes so healthy and look so delicious. What about people whoes culinary expertise ends at boiling pasta? Or people who just want ideas for how to incorporate healthy to their plates that’s not boring, but also not an hours worth of hanging out in the kitchen?

To that I want to say. Don’t be fooled by dressed up food, sometimes what you see is just a simple meal in fancy clothes. Pretty does not mean impractical! (OK sometimes it does…)

For example, grain bowls… buddha bowls… whatever you might call them (I call them lots’a’stuff bowls… because usually I can’t remember what they’re called…), are really big right now. They aaalllwwaaayysss look so fancy and intricate, when really, they’re a great easy way to get a lot of nutrients into a meal (and can also make for easy meal prep if you wanted to get all the components ready ahead of time to store in your fridge).

From beginning to time-to-take-a-photo, this took me 6 minutes (I DID have my quinoa already cooked, when I had batch cooked some a couple days prior, so just a baby cheat).

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So first I gathered my goodies from the fridge. Here I grabbed my pre-cooked quinoa, my mushrooms, my already opened/drained and rinsed can of black beans (OK one more tiny baby cheat), avocado, and my tomato. Throughout my throwing together I also wrangled up my green onions, olive oil (extra virgin), vinegar (white wine), black sesame seeds and salt & pepper!

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I cut up just a bit of bits of everything, threw them into my bowl with the quinoa at its base, drizzled some olive oil and white wine vinegar on it all and sprinkled with salt & pepper!

Then I cleaned. No joke this was part of my time. Although, having said that, it was mostly just putting things back into cupboards, back into their baggies into the fridge and throwing… or gently placing… the dirty dishes into the sink. All of which took maybe a minute or two.

AAAANNNDDD THHEEENNN after my 6 minutes was up, it was time to get this bowl of goodies into better lighting on a fancy board on top of another board with more food and accessories around it. This took as long as it took me to make it. Followed by editing, which took about half as long. … You can of course just go ahead and skip these steps…

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The point is, as long as you know how to chop veggies, drizzle, sprinkle and boil, you can make a basic grain bowl. They can be as easy or as extra as you yourself decide. No matter how fancy you might see one made online I guarantee it took as long or longer to stage, shoot, edit and post about the photo than it did to make the food. The same can be said for many many many things.

Delicious healthy food can absolutely, to varying degrees, be fast and simple to incorporate into your day.

Don’t let food with its gown and jewels on, discourage you from trying it, underneath the filters and garnish its still just “avocado on a rice cake”.