Secret Technique: Lentils

Last week I talked about my vegetarianism as it related to cooking for my kitten. This week, it’s all about cooking for me!

When I became a vegetarian over a decade ago, the biggest concern from my parents and doctors was that I wouldn’t get enough of a daily dose of necessary nutrients for a growing boy. It was a struggle not to just order a cheese pizza and call it a day, then repeat.

About a year ago, we published a breakthrough cookbook, The 10 Things You Need to Eat: And More Than 100 Easy and Delicious Ways to Prepare Them by Dave Lieberman and Anahad O’Connor. (Click here for a review on Booking Mama). Now, not all of the “things” are vegetarian, but a good number are, including beets, berries, nuts, and my topic for today, lentils.

Apparently, in India, where the majority of the world’s vegetarians reside, lentils take the place of red meat because of their high-protein content, not to mention the fact that lentils pack a mean fiber punch. And one of the biggest selling points is that they’re extremely cheap. Trifecta!

I’m a big hummus fan, so the idea of concocting it out of lentils intrigues me. Check out the recipe and then watch the 10 Things authors talk about lentils in the video below.

Lentil “Hummus”
Serves 6 to 8

The lentils are still hot when I use them in this recipe, resulting in a warm dip or spread that may even be better than the chickpeas version. I like to serve this with crudite or with whole wheat pita loaves, cut into sixths and toasted in a 350 degree oven for about 10 minutes. –Dave Lieberman

  • 1 cup dried green lentils
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted tahini
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon sweet paprika, plus more for garnish
  • 1 handful fresh parsley leaves
  • ½ cup olive oil, plus more for garnish
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Cook the lentils in a quart of salted boiling water until soft but not falling apart, no more than 20 minutes. Strain the lentils and add them to a food processor along with garlic, tahini, lemon juice, cumin, 1 teaspoon paprika, parsley, and ½ cup olive oil. Process until completely smooth. Season with salt and pepper to taste, then spoon into a large, shallow bowl. Finish with a dash of paprika and a good drizzle of olive oil.

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Comments
2 Responses to “Secret Technique: Lentils”
  1. Stefano says:

    Hi! Mr Thomas, to be frank i’m intersted to know about this pdcruot although my niece told me about it few month ago and just bought the t series to prove if really works then i may recommend to my friends in philippines. In fact just submitted last night my particular coz i want to be a member not only that i may want my friends to joint member as well. So tell me what to do and how?

  2. Julie P. says:

    I love this cookbook. I just bought my first bag of lentils this week at the store. Might try this recipe or some soup!

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