Wednesday, February 17, 2010

A Hearty Vegan Lunch

Many of you who know me well may scoff at my advertising a vegan dish, as not too long ago the thought of even a purposely vegetarian dish would make my eyes roll to the back of my bacon and butter filled head. However, as a true omnivore and a great lover of both animals and their meat, I acknowledge the fact that we have to be more aware of how our meat gets to our plate. I'm not a PETA person, and I can't say that I really believe in "animal rights" or anything, I'm just a human who doesn't like to see unnecessary suffering inflicted on animals. I think that they should be treated well for the nourishment they provide, not brutalized in factory farms. I know, I know... I'm going to be a hypocrite about this at some point (hence, fallible), but I'm certainly going to avoid any burger that is selling nation-wide for only $1...

But I digress. Lunch!!! Lunch is probably going to be the easiest part of this challenge, as I try to pack something for work almost every day. And it's really not too much of a hassle to make something in advance that will last for a few days... it's like left-overs of something you never ate in the beginning.

I decided to try a recipe from Cat Cora's Cooking from the Hip (thanks Mom!). This is a great cookbook that strongly encourages recipe tampering. Above is a picture of Curried Lentils with Butternut Squash, and yes it looks like baby food... I think I see why she didn't include a picture of this dish in her book... but it tasted great! It's nice to have a warm filling meal that doesn't weigh you down. This made a good 5 portions, served with a side of brown rice.

1.5 cups lentils
3 lbs butternut squash (I used half a GIANT squash), peeled and chunked
1.5 Tbs EVOO (God Damn you, Rachel Ray!)
1.5 Tbs Curry Powder (or more)
1.5 Tsp Fresh Grated Ginger
1.5 Tsp Chilli Powder (or more)
Salt and Pepper as you like it

In a pot, cover the lentils with water and bring to a boil, reduce the heat to a simmer, throw in your squash, cover, and simmer until the squash is squishable (about 25 mins). Drain, then dig out the squash and throw it in a bowl. Mash it up, then add the lentils and the rest of the ingredients. Bake for 20-30 at 375 (or however long you feel like it) in whatever you have lying around... I just used an 8x8 Pyrex.

Below is my tupperware... Taste: 10, Looks: 3. Well!....


Emily Y. said...

loves it! i will be trying this very soon. you know how i love a good lentil.

(i wanted to start the comments going - it's like the street musician putting a dollar in his own hat)

Suzanne said...

I had this for lunch today. I was looking forward to it all day and I was not let down! it was hearty without making me too full and had a lot of flavor! The texture with the rice mixed in was great. Mark, you seasoned this perfectly!!!

Does this make me a groupie??

Nicholas said...

oh my god. i can't believe you gave this a 3 for looks. i made baby poop soup, but you filled a tupperware container with vomit.

all this having been said, i bet it tastes DELICIOUS! I can't wait for the next post!

Jessica said...

Nicholas is right - this looks repulsive. But alas, that is The Way of the Curry.