Monday, March 16, 2009

half days = fun

i really enjoyed working a half day today. AND i think because of it, i won't mind working a full day tomorrow. i think i honestly needed a little break. after working in the morning, i had some quality crochet time... i made progress on the placemat i am working on for a future class, and then i ran out to the yarn store for more supplies, as my dad commissioned me this morning to make a baby gift for one of his friend's granddaughter. since i don't have much time, i am making a loopy toy that the baby girl can grab and shake to her heart's content. this is my first in making a baby toy, but i've made cat toys, so it's basically the same thing . i will post a picture when finished.

i neeeeeeeeeeeeded my afternoon snack today. in fact, i ate it, and then i was still hungry, so i added about a cup of grapes (unpictured... they were green, picture them!).

after shopping and crocheting, i got started on one of my favorite recipes ever... bengali lentil stew. i got this recipe from treatment last year, as we often cooked together for dinner. this made a lot, which i'm very happy about, because i will freeze a couple portions.

topped with a spoonful of greek yogurt, and served with a whole wheat naan, brushed lightly with olive oil and heated in the toaster oven

because this is so good, here's the recipe:

bengali lentil stew
--makes 6 servings--
  • 1 cup red lentils
  • 6 cups vegetable broth
  • 1/2 t turmeric
  • 1 can diced tomatoes
  • 1.5 t salt
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 1/2 t cumin seeds
  • 1/2 t yellow or black mustard seeds (or if you can't find these, 1/4 t dried mustard)
  • 2 t jalapeno pepper, chopped
  • 4 cups onion, chopped
  • 5 t garlic, pressed
  • 1 lb. frozen spinach (no need to drain!)
  • 1/2 cup cilantro leaves, chopped
  • 1.5 cups TVP (i used bob's red mill)
  • garnish: plain yogurt, with optional chopped green onion or chives
1) add lentils to broth in a large saucepan. add turmeric and stir.
2) bring to a boil, then simmer for 20 minutes until the lentils are soft. add tomatoes and salt, and cook for a few minutes longer. reduce heat.
3) meanwhile, heat oil in skillet. add cumin and mustard seeds and saute until fragrant-- just a few minutes. cook at low heat and be careful not to burn the seeds. add jalapeno, onions, and garlic, and cook until soft and golden brown (about 10 min). add spinach (can add right from freezer) and TVP, and cook until hot.
4) add onion mixture to lentils and cook for a few minutes longer, stirring occasionally. if mixture becomes too thick, add some water-- consistency should be of a thick stew.
5) remove from heat. add fresh cilantro leaves and cover to steep for a minute. serve while hot.
6) top with a dollop of plain yogurt, and, if you have them (i forgot) garnish with chopped green
onion or chives.

amazingly, i cleaned as i cooked, so my kitchen is pretty much as clean now as when i started. i hate having a huge mess to deal with after dinner. really, this recipe is a cinch... there is just a bit of chopping.

today was pretty "easy" food wise. oddly, i feel guilty/ashamed when i slip, but also slightly guilty when it doesn't seem so hard... because i think, why can't i just do this every day? at least it's pretty clear that i'm overly hard on myself...

1 comment:

  1. that looks so GOOD... I will have to try it sometime soon. :) and yes, you are too hard on yourself.