vegan

Moroccan Carrot and Lentil Salad

Moroccan Carrot and Lentil Salad | A Thought For Food (www.athoughtforfood.net)

Since the beginning of April, our weekends have been consumed by trips to the Cape. We're getting close to the end of the major work. The main bathroom has been gutted, which is probably our biggest obstacle at this point. There are a few exterior elements... an outdoor shower that's being constructed and some painting... that remain. It's both exciting and slightly overwhelming. But that's home ownership, right? I decided to take this past weekend off, opting to stay home and get projects finished up and some cooking done. I've taken a much longer hiatus from the blog than I'd intended, but I have a few things lined up these next couple of weeks. I'm starting off with a bowl of Moroccan spiced carrots and lentils. While it feels very fall, this is a year-round dish... and an excellent side for an outdoor feast.  It's savory and sweet with a hit of acidity from the citrusy dressing. I've eaten plenty of it on its own, but it certainly feels like the perfect pairing for a platter of grilled chicken or fish.

Moroccan Carrot and Lentil Salad | A Thought For Food (www.athoughtforfood.net)

Moroccan Carrot and Lentil Salad

Servings:
6-8, as a side dish

Ingredients:
1 cup dry green lentils, rinsed and drained
1 lb carrots, peeled and cut at a bias into 1/4-inch thick slices
1 small yellow onion, chopped
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
Juice of 1 lemon
Olive oil
Salt
Black pepper
2 teaspoons chopped fresh dill
1/4 cup currants
Chopped parsley, for garnish

Directions
Bring 1 1/2 cups of water to a boil in a medium pot. Add the lentils and turn the heat down to medium, letting it simmer for 20-25 minutes, until cooked (but not mushy). Drain of any remaining liquid. Transfer lentils to a serving bowl to let cool.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a large baking sheet with aluminum foil. 

In a small bowl, whisk together the cumin, cinnamon, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Add the carrots to a separate bowl and toss with 2 teaspoons olive oil, followed by the spice mix. Spread carrots over the prepared baking pan and transfer to the oven. Cook for 30 minutes, giving the carrots a stir halfway through. 

While the carrots are cooking, heat 2 teaspoons olive oil in a pan set over medium-high heat. Cook the onion for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Transfer onion to the serving bowl with the lentils.

Prepare the dressing by whisking together the lemon juice, 2 tablespoons olive oil, chopped dill, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon black pepper in a large mixing bowl. Pour over the lentils and onion and carefully stir to combine, making sure not to mash up the lentils. 

Once the carrots have finished cooking, carefully toss them with the lentils, along with the currants. Season with salt, to taste. Garnish with chopped parsley. Serve warm or at room temp.

Carrot Ginger Soup

Carrot Ginger Soup
CARROT GINGER-0015.jpg
CARROT GINGER-0016.jpg

A bowl of hot soup soothes the soul in ways few foods can. Even the process has a calming effect. The peeling and chopping of vegetables, the smell of them sautéing, the steam that escapes as it simmers on the stove. I find the whole experience comforting. I've made many batches over these last couple of months to serve to dinner guests (anyone else exhausted from all the holiday gatherings?). This carrot soup was for our friends who just had a baby a few weeks ago. We spent the afternoon at their home, cuddling with the little one, who slept soundly in my arms until she was ready for more food or wanted to be changed, all things I could pass her off for her mommies to do. It made my heart soar to see how happy the two of them are with their new addition. 

I'm looking forward to this coming year and all the dishes I have rattling around in my head. To be honest, things felt a bit disjointed over these last twelve months. There was a lot to juggle... the Cape house, work, travels... and I found it challenging to focus. But I'm feeling like this soup is the right direction. Cooking the things I love to eat and just sharing that with all of you. Here's to a great 2018! Cheers!

CARROT GINGER-0135.jpg
Carrot Ginger Soup from A Thought For Food www.athoughtforfood.net
_T4A0270.jpg
_T4A0356.jpg
_T4A0371.jpg
_T4A0397.jpg
_T4A0392.jpg
_T4A0482.jpg
Carrot Ginger Soup from A Thought For Food - www.athoughtforfood.net

Carrot Ginger Soup

Yield: 6-8 servings
Special Tools: Blender or Immersion Blender

Ingredients:
2 lbs carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1 1/2 cups chopped yellow onion
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 tablespoons chopped peeled fresh ginger
2 tablespoons olive oil
5 cups vegetable broth
Salt
1 1/2 tablespoons maple syrup
2 tablespoons yellow miso paste (use gluten-free miso to make this fully gf)
Sesame oil (optional)
Chopped cilantro, for garnish (optional)

Directions:
Heat olive oil in a medium-sized pot over medium heat. Cook onion for 3 minutes, stirring often, until. Add garlic and ginger and cook for 2 minutes. Add chopped carrot, cover with 4 cups vegetable broth, and bring to a boil. Once it comes to a boil, cover with a lid and reduce heat to a simmer. Cook for 25 minutes, or until the carrots are tender. 

Transfer the soup contents to a blender (or use an immersion blender) and blend until smooth. Add miso and maple syrup and blend to incorporate. Taste for seasoning and, if necessary, add salt. Transfer the mixture back to the pot. The soup will be on the thicker side, but you can thin it out with another cup of vegetable broth. 

Serve in bowls with a light drizzle of sesame oil and chopped cilantro on top. 

Carrot Ginger Soup-0631.jpg

Cabbage and Kohlrabi Slaw

CABBAGE AND KOHLRABI SLAW // A THOUGHT FOR FOOD WWW.ATHOUGHTFORFOOD.NET
CABBAGE AND KOHLRABI SLAW // A THOUGHT FOR FOOD WWW.ATHOUGHTFORFOOD.NET
CABBAGE AND KOHLRABI SLAW // A THOUGHT FOR FOOD WWW.ATHOUGHTFORFOOD.NET
CABBAGE AND KOHLRABI SLAW // A THOUGHT FOR FOOD WWW.ATHOUGHTFORFOOD.NET

I plan on sharing a few dishes inspired by my recent trip to Spain, but vegetables were what I craved when I got home. I ate more meat while I was away than I had planned (I have no regrets... it was all really good and totally worth it) and when I returned I just wanted salad. We had a few heads of cabbage and kohlrabi tucked in our vegetable drawer and then I came across a recipe in Ottolenghi's Plenty that called to me. His version has dried sour cherries, but I thought some fresh cranberries would be a great substitution. I didn't quite expect this slaw to be as addictive as it is. I think it's that combination of garlic and lemon, along with the tart cranberries and the beautiful crunch of the kohlrabi that keeps you wanting to go back for another forkful. 

CABBAGE AND KOHLRABI SLAW // A THOUGHT FOR FOOD WWW.ATHOUGHTFORFOOD.NET
CABBAGE AND KOHLRABI SLAW // A THOUGHT FOR FOOD WWW.ATHOUGHTFORFOOD.NET
CABBAGE AND KOHLRABI SLAW // A THOUGHT FOR FOOD WWW.ATHOUGHTFORFOOD.NET
CABBAGE AND KOHLRABI SLAW // A THOUGHT FOR FOOD WWW.ATHOUGHTFORFOOD.NET
CABBAGE AND KOHLRABI SLAW // A THOUGHT FOR FOOD WWW.ATHOUGHTFORFOOD.NET

Cabbage and Kohlrabi Slaw

Source
Slightly adapted from Ottolenghi's Plenty

Yield
Serves 4

Ingredients
1 medium or 1/2 large kohlrabi
1/2 white cabbage (8 to 9 oz)
Large bunch of dill, roughly chopped
1 cup fresh cranberries, sliced in half
Grated zest of 1 lemon
Juice of 1 lemon
1/4 cup olive oil
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 tsp sugar
Salt
Black pepper

Directions
1. Peel the kohlrabi and cut into thick matchsticks that are about 1/4 inch wide and 2 inches long. Slice the cabbage into 1/4-inch thick strips.

2. Put all the ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Use your hands to massage everything together for about a minute so the flavors mix and the lemon can soften the cabbage and cranberries. Let the slaw sit for about 10 minutes.

3. Check for seasoning and, if necessary, add more salt. Transfer to a serving bowl.