Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Curry Red Lentil Pies

My second recipe entry into the 2015 Lentil Recipe Revelations Challenge has some of my favorite spices! Having grown up in Trinidad, I love eating and cooking many Indian dishes. Roti, dhal, curry...mmm love them all! These hand-held pies have a dhal-like mixture inside made with red lentils. The lentils are simmered with onions, pepper, curry, cumin, coriander and turmeric. Red lentils are perfect for this recipe because they "cook down" and get super soft. And they pair perfectly with Indian spices! The pie "crust" is empanada dough, which are easy to find pre-made in the frozen ethnic aisle. They are baked until golden brown and served with sweet mango chutney. 


For the Lentils:

1 1/4 cups Canadian red lentils
3 1/4 cups water
3/4 cup diced onion
3/4 cup diced green bell pepper
1 green onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp curry powder
1/4 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp ground coriander
1/4 tsp ground turmeric
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 tsp hot sauce
3/4 tbsp sugar

For the Pies:
20 empanada dough discs, thawed
1 egg, beaten
cups mango chutney, from a jar

In a medium pot, combine all ingredients for the lentils. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Cover and reduce heat to medium-low. Let cook until lentils are soft, about 25 minutes, stirring occasionally. Let cool for 10 minutes.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Place a spoonful of curry lentils in the middle of each dough disc. Moisten edge of disc with water. Fold over in half (into a semi-circle). Fold along edge to seal (or press edge sealed with a fork). Place pies on two baking sheets (10 per sheet). Brush tops with egg wash.
Bake in oven until golden brown on top, about 18 to 20 minutes.
Put chutney in microwavable bowl and warm for 1 minute.
Serve pies with warm mango chutney. Makes 20 pies.

Friday, February 13, 2015

Crispy Green Lentil Cups!

I'm excited to try my hand at a creative lentil recipe for the 2015 Lentil Recipe Revelations Challenge! When you think of lentils, appetizers don't usually come to mind. I normally cook them as a side dish. This bite-size appetizer recipe is easy and quick to make. A crispy phyllo cup filled with garlic-infused French green lentils, creamy goat cheese and a dash of heat will have you thinking about lentils in a new way!


1/2 cup Canadian French green lentils
1 1/2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 tsp thyme leaves
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
2/3 cup crumbled goat cheese
30 frozen mini phyllo shells
3 tbsp crushed red pepper flakes

In a medium pot, combine lentils, broth, garlic, thyme, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Cover pot and reduce heat to medium-low. Let simmer until lentils are tender but not mushy, about 25 minutes. Let cool for 10 minutes.
While lentils are cooling, preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Place mini phyllo shells on a baking sheet in a single layer. Bake in oven for 4 minutes (to get extra crispy!).
Fill each phyllo shell with a spoonful of lentils. Top with goat cheese and garnish with red pepper flakes.

To learn more about the many health benefits of lentils, visit Canadian Lentils

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Banana Yogurt Pancakes

Start your day off right with these delicious pancakes! Who knew that watermelon makes a great fruit topping? Vanilla Greek yogurt is a healthy addition and adds flavor and sweetness!


For the Pancakes:
1 cup all purpose flour
2 tbsp brown sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 ripe banana, mashed
1 cup vanilla Greek yogurt
1/2 cup milk
1 egg, beaten
1 tbsp canola oil

For the Topping:
2 cups diced watermelon
5 fresh mint leaves, chopped
3 tbsp honey

In a large bowl, combine flour, brown sugar, baking powder and salt. Mix well.
In another large bowl, combine mashed banana, vanilla Greek yogurt, milk, egg and oil. Mix well.
Combine all ingredients and stir until mixed well.
Spray a griddle or large non-stick pan with cooking spray (or lightly oil). Preheat over medium heat.
Pour 1/4 cupfuls of batter at a time onto hot griddle or pan. When pancakes begin to bubble, after about 3 minutes, carefully flip over with spatula. Cook until browned on other side. Makes about 14 pancakes.
To make the topping, combine watermelon, mint and honey in a medium bowl. Mix gently.
Serve warm pancakes topped with watermelon honey herb topping.