A Cozy and Healthy Fall Recipe
Graphic designer and wellness-extraordinaire Brooke McCallion
shares a tasty-yet-healthy autumn recipe!
Golden Lentil Stew
I love to cook on Sundays and this golden lentil stew is warming and nourishing for chilly months ahead. It tastes like a mild Indian curry with a hint of sweetness from the cinnamon. You can add extra water or broth to make it more like a soup or use the measurements below to make a hearty vegetarian stew. I cook with lentils, turmeric and cruciferous vegetables at least 3x a week due to their amazing health benefits. Here's why –
Lentils: The easiest way to keep your heart happy is to eat lentils! They are high in fiber, iron and magnesium, which are all-stars when it comes to preventing heart disease. Lentils are also cheap to buy and easy to prepare. French and green lentils take a little longer to cook and stay firm, while red lentils cook quickly and soften. All are delicious!
Turmeric: Turmeric is an incredible ancient spice with a slew of benefits thanks to its powerful medicinal compound: curcumin. Curcumin has powerful anti-inflammatory properties and has been proven to decrease overall cancer risks. It also helps regulate sugar and fat blood levels and is amazing for digestion. Another delicious way to include turmeric in your diet is to make a golden latte. Simply warm two cups of almond milk with 1 tsp turmeric, 1/2 tsp cinnamon, 1/4 tsp ground ginger, a pinch of black pepper and a little honey.
Cruciferous vegetables: Cruciferous vegetables are extremely powerful in purging heavy metals from our bodies because they are high in sulfur. Along with detoxification, these vegetables contain a powerful compound called sulforaphane (aka: SPN) that can kill cancer cells. But to make sure SPN is successfully formed, you must chop up your cruciferous vegetables and let them sit for at least 45 minutes. At this point, they should have an odor and will be easier to digest once you eat them! If you don't have 45 minutes to spare, studies have shown that sprinkling mustard powder over the vegetables significantly increased the formation of SPN.
1 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 medium onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 teaspoons ground turmeric
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 a can (15 oz) diced tomatoes, with juices
1 (15 oz) can coconut milk
1 cup uncooked red lentils
3 cups water or broth
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 cup kale, chopped
1 cup broccoli, chopped
- In a large heavy bottom pot, add the oil, onion and garlic and sauté over medium heat for 4 to 5 minutes until the onion softens.
- Next, stir in the turmeric, cumin and cinnamon and continue cooking for ~1 minute.
- Add the half can of diced tomatoes (with juices), coconut milk, red lentils, water, salt and pepper. Stir to combine and increase heat to high. Once it boils, reduce the heat to a low boil.
- Add in broccoli and any other vegetables. Sweet potatoes, cauliflower, carrots are all good options!
- Simmer, uncovered, for about 20 minutes until the lentils soften. Stir often.
- Turn off the heat and mix in the kale until wilted. Taste and add more spices if needed. Ladle into bowls and top with hot sauce or chopped cilantro.
To see more plant-based recipes like this, be sure to follow Brooke's wellness Instagram