Taking a lunch box to school or work can be much healthier than buying meals and unhealthy snacks every day.
Lentil and rice salad
Serves 4 – 6
Brown rice and lentils are a perfect combination. Together they form a complete protein, making this a wholesome meal.
2 tsp (10 ml) sunflower or olive oil
2 onions, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
2 carrots, sliced
2 celery stalks, sliced
1 tsp (5 ml) ground cumin
1 tsp (5 ml) dried mixed herbs
1 bay leaf and 1 cinnamon stick
1 cup (250 ml) dried brown lentils
1 cup (250 ml) uncooked brown rice or brown basmati rice
3 cups (750 ml) water
½ tsp (2,5 ml) salt
lemon juice and black pepper to taste
100 g broccoli, cut into florets
100 g green beans, halved width wise
1 red or green pepper, seeded and sliced
2-3 tbsp (30-45 ml) chopped fresh parsley or coriander
- Heat oil in a pot and fry onions, garlic, carrots and celery for a few minutes.
- Add cumin, dried herbs, bay leaf and cinnamon with the lentils, rice, water and salt.
- Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer with a lid for 30-40 minutes or until the rice and lentils are tender. Add another ½ cup of water during the cooking time, if necessary.
- Season with lemon juice and pepper and allow to cool.
- Meanwhile, place broccoli and green beans in a shallow dish and cover with boiling water. Allow to stand for 5 minutes or until just cooked, but still bright green and crunchy. Drain and repeat if necessary.
- Rinse with cold water to cool down and drain well. Stir into the lentil and rice mixture, with the pepper slices and herbs.
- Pack in a lunch box to enjoy as a vegetarian meal with fresh seasonal fruit.
- When in season, avocado is delicious in this salad.
- For added crunch, sprinkle sunflower or sesame seeds over the salad.
- Dried lentils are easy to cook. There’s no need for soaking and you can cook it like rice for 30-40 minutes.
- If available, try this dish with brown basmati rice. It is high in fibre and has a delicious nutty flavour that combines well with the lentils, cumin and green veggies.