One of my favorite meals to make since it's versitile, delicious, easy to make, and healthy. You can make this a plant based meal or add meat to it. I usually make it plant based for myself then fry up some meat on the side so the family can add it if desired.
Can make this in a casserole form or add some more broth to make it a comforting soup in the winter. The below directions are for the casserole form.
- olive oil
- 3 medium carrots, diced
- 1 medium yellow or sweet onion, diced
- 1 medium zuchini, diced
- 2-3 medium sweet potatoes, diced
- 1 tbl fresh lemon juice
- 4 cloves minced garlic
- 2 (14.5 oz) cans of diced tomatoes
- 1 1/4 cups dried green lentils
- 1 tbl italian seasoning
- 1 tsp plant-based bacon seasoning (optional)
- 4 cups vegetable (or chicken) broth
- Heat olive oil in a pot on medium high heat. Add sweet potato, carrots, and onion. Saute for 3-4 minutes or until all are tender. Add garlic and saute another 2-3 minutes.
- Add broth and tomatoes. Stir. Then add lentils and all seasonings. Stir until mixed well.
- Bring to a boil and reduce heat to medium low. Cover and simmer for about 30-35 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Add zucchini and simmer another 10 minutes then stir in lemon juice. Let simmer until lentils have soaked all the broth
To make more soupy, add about another cup of broth. If you want meat added to this (venison, beef, chicken, pork, bacon are all good with it), you can either brown the meat in the beginning with step 1 or brown the meat near the end of step 3 while the lentils are close to done boiling (if you or a select number of people don't want meat added then cook it at the end).
The seasoning amounts are recommendations, season to your own taste. If you are adding meat, you won't need the bacon seasoning. That is more for when you are on a plant-based diet and you want a "meat" type flavor to it.
This dish can be easily experiemented with. Don't skip out on the fresh lemon juice. Even though it's a small amount it adds some zip to it. Check out some juicers to get some fresh juices for this recipe (and many other recipes).
Let me know if you've tried this recipe and your thoughts about it. Thanks!