Mujadara….Lentil, Rice and Camelized Onion Pilaf….Great for Vegetarians or Vegans; Gluten Free. Healthy Mediterranean.

Recipe, Vegetarian

 

Mujadarah Recipe

Serves 4 

Vegetarian, vegan (if you use oil or margarine instead of butter), and gluten free

Ingredients

6 medium yellow onions, sliced thin (yellow onions are healthier than white)
2 tablespoons of olive oil (can also use butter)
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 cups green or brown lentils (GREEN is my favorite plus it has more fiber)….(red is not a good choice for this) 
2 cups white or brown rice (Brown is healthier but either is fine) 
1/2 teaspoon cinammon and 1/2 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon salt and 1 teaspoon pepper

Instructions:

1. Slice the onions into long pieces (do not dice). Heat medium frying pan on med-high heat. Add Veg­etable Oil and  onions. Cook until onions are caramelized. (You can add one onion at a time to make easier)

2.  Boil 7 cups of water in a medium saucepan. Add lentils, salt and pep­per. Cover, reduce heat and sim­mer for approximately 20 minutes.

3.  Add rice, olive oil, cumin, cinammon and cover and sim­mer for an addi­tional 20 minutes.  Remove from stove

4. Once done with lentils and rice add the carmelized, blackened onions. 

Let me know how it turns out.

Tips:

Use same amount of cups of lentils and rice

Add flat leaf parsley or cilantro for topping when serving

Serve wtih yogurt, pita bread, salad, fruits or hummus

Ellen has also listed a recipe below in one of her comments. She said that Mujadara is one of her favorites.


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Fava Bean Dip Recipe. Add Mediterranean Fiber to Your Diet.

Recipe

Try this Fava Bean Dip Recipe. Please let me know how you like it. :)

16 ounces of fresh fava beans, shelled and peeled (canned fava beans also okay) 
2 tablespoons lemon juice or freshly squeezed lemon
2 tablespoons tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt

pita bread for serving

  1. Fill a medium saucepan with water and bring it to a boil. Pour in the fava beans. Boil the beans for approximately 5 minues. Drain, reserving about 1 tablespoon of the cooking liquid. Peel the fava beans. 
  2. Put the beans, cooking liquid and lemon juice into a blender or food processor. (Add more liquid to make a thinner dip).
  3. Remove the mixture and place into a serving bowl. Stir in the salt. 
  4. Serve with pita bread for dipping.

Other tips: Add tomatoes or onions or parsley.


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Weight Loss Tip #1

Healthy Living

I received this weight loss tip from one of my readers. She said that when you are eating out at a restaurant and you begin to feel full that you should immediately stop eating….AND then, pour water directly onto your food so that it “tastes watery” and is no longer edible. (this only applies if you are not planning to take the food home). She says this helps her stop eating unnecessary calories.

Just don’t dessert!! :-)

Thanks Amanda!!

Thoughts on this tip??? Do you have any tips?


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FAVA beans….What can a FAVA bean do for me?? Mediterranean Healthy :-)

Protein

 

When I think of Fava Beans, I think of  my late father (God rest his soul). On Saturday mornings, when my mom would be at work, my dad would “cook” breakfast for my brothers and I. His favorite dish was fava bean dip with pita bread so it quickly became our Saturday breakfast.  I still love fava bean dip, and I will be sharing a recipe soon.  Let me know if you all have a recipe that you would like to share or if you have any “fava bean memories/stories”.

Below I would like to point out the GOOD, BAD, and UGLY on fava beans.

GOOD

 Fava beans are HIGH in fiber and have ~85% of the recommended daily value. They also contain high amounts of iron ~30% of the recommended daily value. Fava beans are also high in phosphorus, potassium, vitamin K, and vitamin A.

Fava beans contain L-dopa which is used in the treatment of Parkinson’s disease. They also are a whole grain which helps with reducing the risks of the heart attacks and heart disease. They contain no cholesterol as well. They are Mediterranean Heart Healthy!! 

BAD

During my residency, I treated quite a few patients with Glucose 6-Phosphate Dehydrogenase (G6PD) deficiency.  This rare genetic disorder which may cause a type of anemia has been linked to Mediterranean natives, and it generally affects men. Patients with this condition may not be able to digest fava beans appropriately and should try and avoid them. 

UGLY

Interestingly enough, the term fava beans is misleading as fava beans actually belong to the pea family rather than the “bean” family. In general, they should be peeled before eating to improve the inner buttery taste of the fava bean.


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Lentils….Mediterranean Healthy. Beware: do not eat them raw.

Protein

As a young girl, I remember visiting my maternal grandmother who often made me soup for lunch or dinner. It was ALWAYS lentil soup. I cannot recall a time that I went to my grandmother’s house and did not eat lentil soup. I have to say that her lentil soup was amazing!!! But, at the time I never realized that my grandmother was not only a great lentil soup “cooker” but she was also providing me with one of the most nutritious meals a child could eat.

There are various types of lentils as I mentioned in the last blog. Some of the most common are red, green and yellow. My favorite is probably green, but I definitely like all of them.

One key piece of information about lentils is that they should not be eaten raw. This is because raw lentils have “anti-nutrients” which interefere with the absorption of nutrients. Soaking lentils overnight removes the anti-nutrients. Some lentils need to be soaked before cooking, while others do not have to be soaked and should be boiled immediately upon opening the package. Email me if you have questions about this or please comment below.

Lentils contain very high levels of protein and are an excellent source of protein for not only vegetarians but for everyone since we all need protein. They can help provide protein to those on a low-carb diet or even those of us who are trying to maintain our figure and work out. Athletes often eat lentils the night before their big match. They also contain high amounts of iron which is important in pregnant women, children or in people who are anemic.

In addition, lentils have folate (also good in pregnancy) and vitamin B.

Finally, lentils contain a high amount of fiber, and they are important in preventing colon cancer. Green lentils contain about 20% more fiber than non-green lentils so if you are trying to increase your fiber, I would recommend using green lentils.

Who is going to make lentils for dinner tonight? :-)


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