Prep/cook time: 40 minutes Serves 6 / Warming on a fall night, this one-pot meal provides both nourishing protein from lentils and antioxidants from superfood spinach. Masoor dal, a beautiful salmon-colored lentil, is skinned and split before purchase, so it cooks quickly and turns golden and soft when cooked. You can substitute red or yellow lentils, though cooking time will increase a bit.
1 cup red lentils (masoor dal)
7 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
2 tablespoons olive or grapeseed oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 medium red bell pepper, diced
1 large clove garlic, sliced
2 cups baby spinach
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1. In a medium pot, bring lentils, broth, bay leaves, and paprika to a boil. Reduce to a rolling boil, cover, and cook 20 minutes, until lentils begin to break apart.
2. While lentils are cooking, heat oil in a large skillet and sauté onion and red pepper over medium heat, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and sauté briefly.
3. Remove lentils from heat; discard bay leaves. Working in batches, transfer lentil mixture to a blender and process until smooth. Return to pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, stir in onion mixture, then add spinach, salt, and pepper to taste.
PER SERVING: 190 cal, 24% fat cal, 5g fat, 1g sat fat, 0mg chol, 9g protein, 29g carb, 4g fiber, 481mg sodium