Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Recipe - Lentil and Beet Hummus

Do you cleanse? and I'm not talkin about doing the dishes here. Though you probably should do those if you haven't. Cleansing is a thing. A very popular thing. I've avoided it, ok skeptically scorned it would be more accurate, because I couldn't fathom a cleanse actually doing what it is supposed to do. It's supposed to, as far as I understand it, drop kick your body in the butt and trick it into being healthy despite your years of fried fatty cream drenched abandon. What's not to like about that? Cause I have a lot of ice cream pints to make up for.

Why yes. Yes, those are ice cream pint containers lining my cabinets. That's not even all of them. ... I'm totally not kidding. And I'm not even sorry.

So I'm prime candidate to do a cleanse. But which one? There are a lot to choose from.  A LOT. The only one I've previously considered is a Juice Cleanse from Juice Nashville. They offer a three day cleanse featuring a variety of their juices and almond milk. I've wanted to try their juices as they look good, sound good, and have quite a following in Middle Tennessee. But .... I quickly discarded any serious consideration of this cleanse as I can't see myself being able to not eat for three days. Even if my stomach was permanently distended with healthy fresh juices and creamy nut milk that tasted like liquid love, I'm just miss mastication too much. (that means chewing people. get your mind out of the gutter)

I finally did it last week though. A cleanse that is. The one I picked came from the latest issue of Vegetarian Times. I chose it because it has real food and lots of it. Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and even a snackie poo. woo hoo. It was a 3 day almost vegan cleanse that featured 7 "super" foods packed with antioxidants and guaranteed to make your liver as shiney and pure as a newborn babes, your energy level higher than a five year old going into a sugar rush, and your body detoxified and revitalized till you feel like you could chew steel and bend titanium with your bare hands. Broccoli, Beets, Spinach, Blueberries, Avocado, Lentils, and Almonds. I can do this, I thought. ... Turns out not so much. I lasted a day and a half. yeah......

Why did I fail? because it turns out that not only can I not drink all my food, I can't eat the same foods over and over again. Beets for Breakfast, Beets for Lunch, Beets for Dinner and how much green can one person really eat? It wasn't a total bust though. There was a Lentil Beet Hummus that was worth keeping and making again with a few modifications. That recipe I will share. But first, have some pictures of the rest of the cleanse.

beet smoothie. The first day it tasted ok. not great but pretty doable. even good in a way. The second day ... wasn't feelin it so much. I made one the third day and had to force it down.

Broccoli Spinach Salad with Avocado Dressing. This was a lot of green. It wasn't bad but I expected more flavor than I got out of it and the dressing was a bit too heavy but it did have a good flavor.

Now for the Lentil Beet Hummus. dum dum dum......

Here is what it is supposed to look like from the Vegetarian Times website:

Here is what mine looked like:

And I did not murder anyone and cook them in my vintage blue and white pot. It's the beets I promise. 

And here is the recipe slightly adapted from Vegetarian Times:

Lentil and Beet Hummus
makes 1 1/2 cups       
  • ½ cup black beluga lentils, rinsed and soaked overnight ( I used normal brown lentils because they were easier to find)
  • 2 medium beets, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 Tbs. tahini paste
  • 2 Tbs. cold-pressed olive oil
  •  1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 2 tsp. grated lemon zest
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • 1 T dried red pepper flakes (I'm just guessing here as the original recipe didn't call for any and I thought it could use a little kick of hot)
  • coarse grained salt and olive oil to serve (both optional. I thought these would be a good addition. The salt is especially appreciated if you are eating this with raw veggies. I'm kind of a salt fiend. No judging)
1. Drain and rinse soaked lentils. Bring lentils, beets, and 1 cup water to a boil in medium saucepan. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer 10 - 15 minutes, or until all water is absorbed.
2. Drop garlic, tahini, olive oil, lemon juice, lemon zest, salt and red pepper flakes to a food processor or blender and process until creamy. Add lentils and beets, and blend on high until smooth. Pour into your serving dish and sprinkle with salt and drizzle with olive oil to taste.