Vegan Chili (That is My New Favorite)

Ok, you might be thinking after last week’s post and this post that I’m going vegan.

Well…I’m not. I think that’s great if you want to be vegan, but I’m sticking with my yogurt and cheese.

But, I do like the idea of eating a more plant-based diet.

Believe it or not, this recipe rivals my favorite chili recipe. Of course, it’s different. The meat is replaced with butternut squash and lentils. But, it’s SO good.

The lentils give it the perfect texture, and the butternut squash is a little sweet and plays well off of the savory, smokey spices.

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Simple Saturday: Lentil Salad

lentil salad

I find it very interesting that this was the recipe I had in mind to post today.

Lentil salad: A dish that is so French in many ways (green lentils, red wine vinegar) and one that has its Middle Eastern roots, as well.

After what happened in France yesterday, all of us are reeling with questions of why and how and how can we end all of the hate.

It’s gotten me thinking a lot about the people who have been terrorized by groups like ISIS for a long time. My heart goes out to all of the Syrian refugees, all of the Middle Eastern children who have grown up with war as the norm, all of the people in my Christian family who have had to fear for their lives because of their beliefs.

It would be so easy to live life in fear, or to think something earthly can protect us from all of it. But, at these times, I am so grateful that I have something to root me, something that is much greater than earthly hate and toil.

Today is a good reminder to take care of our fellow man, pray for them, act on each other’s behalf. As The Decemberists so beautifully sing, “And you must bear your neighbor’s burden within reason.”

A lot of people are hurting for a lot of reasons, and I believe we each have a part to play in helping them.

Maybe when you eat this Lentil Salad, you’ll think about something similar.

lentil salad

Here’s how you make it:

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A Few Questions

mujaddara

First question: Have you been to Neomonde in Raleigh, NC?

If yes, then good choice. If no, then get down here and take yourself out for some freshly made pita and the best hummus and Mediterranean sides of your life.

Second question: Have you ever had or heard of mujaddara?

This middle eastern dish happens to be in the hot section of the salad case at Neomonde, and it is one of my favorites.

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Hot Weather Lunch

french lentil salad

I was going to name this post “Warm Weather Lunch”, but, let’s face it, it’s been hitting the 100-degree mark around here and it’s just plain hot (I won’t even mention the humidity).

On days like this, you don’t want an elaborate meal or a casserole. You just want something fresh and healthy that won’t weigh you down.

This French Lentil Salad is perfect for that.

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Lazy Night Soup

lentil soup

It’s always a good idea to keep a few recipes in your repertoire that are quick, comforting, cheap and make lots of leftovers.

This Lentil Soup is the epitome of those things.

And it’s a recipe from a new blogger friend of mine, The Olive and The Sea. Check out her post for step-by-step photos.

lentil soup

This warming, healthy Lentil Soup is totally comfort food for the soul! Speaking of, do you remember those Chicken Soup for the Soul books? I used to love getting lost in those at a friend’s house or in Books A Million. I’m a sucker for a good story and a good soup, you could say.

For those nights or days when you only have a few ingredients on hand and want something that will give you food hug (worthy of Chicken Soup for the Soul) from the inside out, turn to this no-fail Lentil Soup.

lentil soup

Enjoy!

lentil-soup recipe

*Click on recipe card to enlarge or right click to save.