About Vegan Libre
Vegan Libre is the place to be if you are interested in living a “natural life”, focused on diet, health habits, and environment. It is not the place to be if you are looking for indoctrination, or would rather not think for yourself.
Vegan Libre recognizes that people should choose their own way of life for their own reasons, not because they are told to do so. The prototypical Vegan Libre reader will be inquisitive and open-minded, but will never be afraid to make his or her own decisions even if they don’t fit a certain “label”.
Vegan Libre is written from the point of view of a vegan man, but does not promote gender bias or discrimination of any sort. The only thing you should discriminate is what you choose to consume or do with yourself, not what others choose for themselves.
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Below is one of his recipes I'm particularly fond of, because you know I love middle eastern cuisine.
Masoor Dhal over Rice
Last night I made an Indian dhal for the first time. Unlike curries where vegetables are stir-fried with spices, dhals start as lentils and are then infused with spices and oil. The result can be served over rice, with bread (rotis if you want to stay in Indian cuisine), or even as soup for western applications. The particular dhal dish I chose was masoor dhal, or red lentils, served over yellow rice (white basmati cooked with turmeric). I also served Aloo Palak as a side, for a healthy dose of vegetable curry to go along with the protein and starch of the lentils and rice. The result: a delicious, satisfying, balanced meal, packed with nutrients and flavor. Behold (click image to enlarge):
1 cup (dry) white Basmati, cooked per package instructions (plus 1tbsp turmeric added to water)
1 cup (dry) organic red lentils
2 3/4 cups water
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 tbsp organic unsalted tomato paste
1 tbsp whole mustard seeds
1 tbsp ground cumin
1/2 tbsp ground coriander
1 tbsp garlic powder
1/2 tbsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
salt to taste
fresh cilantro leaves for garnish
Combine lentils and water in a pot, and bring to a boil. Stir, reduce to simmer, and cover. Cook for about 45-50 minutes (you want to overcook the lentils for this dish).
Combine olive oil, mustard seeds, and all spices except salt in a small nonstick skillet. Heat over medium flame until you hear the mustard seeds crackle. Remove from heat, carefully pour hot spiced oil into cooked lentils, and stir well. Add tomato paste and salt to taste, stir well, cover, and continue to cook lentils for 5 more minutes. Remove from heat and serve over rice, garnishing with fresh cilantro leaves to taste. Serves 3-4.
Honestly, I’ve never been a fan of lentils. But I have to say that this dhal was delicious, and in the grand scheme of things, very easy to make. You can also introduce it to your friends and family as soup (for example, “Indian Red Lentil soup”), and then explain the whole process and the variations while everyone enjoys it. It’s even a nice dish to bring to a non-vegan household to ensure you have enough nutrition even if there are not many other choices. In fact, I am told that this type of dish is given to toddlers to wean them off mother’s milk, enjoyed by adults and children alike as “comfort food”, or consumed to help recover from recent illness. In addition to being so nutritious, it’s also very gentle on your stomach and digestive system, which is a huge bonus.
I hope you enjoyed this guest post and are looking forward to more guest posts in the future. If you, or someone you know has a vegan blog, feel free to contact me and we can set something up. Looking at what others are whipping up is always a good way to get inspiration for your own meals when you're feeling in a bit of a slump. New podcast out soon (finally got that new mic) and I'll definitely be getting lots of new recipes up in the coming weeks (I know it's been a while). Don't forget, I'm now on Twitter and Facebook! Don't get left out of all my rants and raves 24/7 on twitter!
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