I really want you guys to veg out with me.
And by veg out I obviously mean eat ridiculous amounts of actual veggies. Although laying on the couch watching Chef's Table on Netflix sounds like a great way to veg out, too.
Have you watched Chef's Table? It's a documentary series where each episode features a different world renowned chef. It basically tells their life story of how they got to be where they are today and also features their incredible restaurants and dishes. Scott and I are obsessed. It is filmed so beautifully and many episodes have actually moved me to tears. It's so inspiring to see how these chefs have followed their passion and become so successful. I'm kinda sappy though, I admit it.
The point of this blog post is not really to tell you about Chef's Table, although if you want to chat more about it don't hesitate to reach out to me because I could (and would) talk about how much I love it ALL DAY. Now I just need to find a way to make about $500,000 more to be able to afford all these fancy restaurants that have been added to my foodie bucket list. No big deal.
But hi! Ok! Let's talk about this dish! This salad is really simple and really, really good. It highlights one of my favorite foods, LENTILS.
But first...are you familiar with pulses? Pulses are the tiny, but very mighty foods known as beans, dry peas, lentils, and chickpeas. These little guys are not new foods, but they have been newly anointed as power foods! Pulses are totally having their moment right now and I couldn't be more excited. If you haven't noticed already, I'll take any excuse to get more of these nutritional powerhouses into my diet. Chickpea salad, three bean fiesta salad, black bean loaded veggie burgers, zoodles with veggie lentil marinara, the list goes on and on. I just can't get enough! I love them because they are affordable, sustainable, versatile, and incredibly nutritious. They are filled with fiber, plant-protein (9 grams per half cup to be exact!), folate, potassium, B vitamins, zinc, and iron. Heck yes!
Want to learn more? Head on over to PulsePledge.com to learn even more about pulses and join the 45k + people to sign up for the Pulse Pledge, where you can commit to eating pulses once a week for 10 weeks. You will receive more tips, tricks, and recipes to help make it easy to include pulses into your diet. Your bod (and taste buds) will thank you!
For this dish, I wanted to make something light and easy, yet hearty and comforting. September really is the bridge between summer and fall and that's exactly what this dish is to me. A mix of light, bright, colorful veggies and chili spiced roasted sweet potatoes and hearty lentils. It honestly doesn't get much better. This dish just speaks to my September loving, veghead soul.
I used black lentils for this recipe because I wanted the other colors to really pop. And boy, did they pop - just look at all those colors! Originally, I was just going to do roasted sweet potatoes and lentils, toss it in a quick dressing, and call it a day. I opened up my fridge to see some kale, red bell pepper, asparagus, and a gorgeous red onion so I decided to throw them in the dish. It turned out to be a fabulous decision. The result was a wonderful texture, lots of color, and lots of flavor.
I made a simple dressing of Dijon mustard, olive oil, apple cider vinegar, maple syrup, fresh squeezed lemon, and a pinch of salt & pepper.
Viola! Dinner is served!
....With a hefty dose of plant-protein, complex carbohydrate, loads of fiber, and tons of nutrients. Just the way I like it :)
Roasted Sweet Potato & Lentil Salad
|Serves 2 as main dish, serves 4 as side|
- 1 cup black (beluga) lentils, uncooked
- 2 cups vegetable broth
- 2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
- 3 Tbsp olive oil, divided
- 1/2 tsp chili powder
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1 bunch asparagus, chopped and woody ends discarded
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 red onion, sliced
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- 2-3 cups kale, roughly chopped
- Salt & pepper to taste
For the dressing
- 1 Tbsp maple syrup
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1.5 tsp Dijon mustard
- 1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
- Juice of 1/2 a lemon
- salt & pepper to taste
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees (F).
- Place the lentils in a large saucepan with vegetable broth and bring to a boil. Once boiling, cover and lower the heat to low. Simmer until the lentils are tender, about 18-20 minutes.
- Toss the sweet potatoes with 1 Tbsp olive oil, chili powder, garlic powder, and a pinch of salt & pepper. Lay out on a baking tray.
- Toss the asparagus with 1/2 -1 Tbsp olive oil and lay out on a separate baking sheet.
- Roast the veggies in the oven. The sweet potatoes will take about 20-25 minutes. Toss them halfway through so they roast evenly. The asparagus will take about 10 minutes. You want them a bit soft, but still bright with a slight crunch.
- Saute the garlic, onion, and red bell pepper in ~1 Tbsp olive oil over medium high heat until onion and pepper become softer. Add the kale and saute for about 2-3 more minutes.
- For the dressing, place all ingredients in a small bowl and whisk together until well combined.
- Place the warm lentils, sweet potato, asparagus, and sauteed veggies together in a large bowl. Add the dressing and toss to combine.
This post is sponsored by USA Pulses. As always, all opinions are my own. Thanks for supporting brands that make WholeLivingLauren possible!