Tonight – and every night that we eat it – I’m super-grateful for this recipe for Moroccan Lentils.
We were introduced to this by a dear friend of ours, who served it to Sean on a solo visit once, pre-Covid (remember those times?). He was excited because she had made it compliant with the whole-foods-plant-based lifestyle. And she made it in the Instant Pot, which is easy. He sent me a picture and raved about it. I was like, “Hmm, sounds nice.”
Little did I know.
It is basically our favourite meal. It is JUST DELICIOUS. And simple to make. AND INCREDIBLY TASTY. And filling. And smells fantastic while cooking. I don’t know if you will feel the same way, but honestly… I literally eat this and then the leftovers for three or four days straight sometimes, and I don’t get tired of it. (Not for every meal… but you get the idea.) It’s also very, very nutritious.
Also, I like it because Sean makes basically the whole thing… and then I make the sauce. And we both feel like we’ve accomplished something.
This takes about an hour to be ready, but most of that time is waiting for it to cook – in other words, reading Reddit (if you’re Sean) or playing Wordscapes or maybe blogging (if you’re me).
1 C red lentils
1 C green lentils
2 C water
1 28-oz. can diced tomatoes
1 med/large onion, diced
1 tsp paprika
2 tsp ground ginger
2 tsp cumin
2 tsp chili powder*
1/2 tsp cinnamon
6 cloves minced fresh garlic – or 2T jarred minced garlic
1 tsp salt
*I was today years old when I found out that chili powder and chile powder are two different things!!! **mindblown** So what we have in our spice drawer is chili powder, and it actually has paprika and salt and other things in it! Take from that what you will. (I actually don’t think chile powder is that easy to find around here.)
Wash some sweet potatoes and stab them with a fork, then bake them in the oven at 425. We usually make two or three big ones and they take about an hour, but if you have smaller ones they will be done sooner. You’ll know they’re done when a fork easily goes into the potato. (Also when they start spewing caramelized sugar from their fork-holes it’s a pretty good indication.)
Throw the first twelve ingredients (through salt) into the Instant Pot, stir them around, and set it to pressure cook for 27 minutes. If you don’t have an Instant Pot, you can still make this in a pot on the stove – you will probably need about twice the water, and you will need to watch it more carefully and stir it sometimes.
Let the pressure naturally release for at least ten minutes when the time is up. When you’re ready to serve, stir a few (or several) handfuls of baby spinach into the lentils.
We like to put half a sweet potato in a bowl, chop it into chunks, and pour the lentils on top.
For the sauce:
Your proportions are a matter of taste here. I usually put about 1/4 C of tahini in a bowl and add 1-1/5 Tbsp lemon juice. Then I mix it with a fork – it strangely becomes thicker – and then keep mixing as I add water about 1 Tbsp at a time until it’s a nice drizzling consistency. Then I add salt, garlic powder and/or onion powder to taste. (Or lately I just add Herbamare.)
Then drizzle with gusto, decorate with cilantro to taste, and dig in! Get those lentils in ya. YES and YUM.