Monday, October 12, 2009

VEGANMOFO 2009: The Week of NEW!

This week I have decided to do something NEW. Every night this week I will be preparing recipes using ingredients that I have never used before. I always love trying new ingredients, so the thought of challenging myself in this way is exciting.

The rules:
1. Each dish served for dinner must contain at least one new ingredient.
2. Recipes for each dish must be posted.
3. Reviews of the new ingredient and the recipe as a whole must also be posted.
4. Photographs, including preparation photographs, must be posted as well.

Here's a delicious meal to start out with:

Lemon Garlic Beets with Lentils and Purple Mustard Greens
New ingredient(s): Purple Mustard Greens

1 cup French lentils, washed (green lentils work fine as well!)
4 cups water
3 tbsp tamari
4 tbsp apple cider vinegar
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, plus 1 tbsp later
10 beets
1 lemon, juiced
2 cloves garlic, grated
salt and pepper to taste
10 leaves purple mustard greens

1. Combine lentils, water, tamari, vinegar, and olive oil in a large pot. Bring to a boil and then simmer on medium-high heat for 15 minutes. 2. While the lentils are cooking, peel the beets and cut them into wedges. Place the beets in a steamer within the pot that the lentils are cooking in. The steam coming off the lentil mixture will steam the beets and the nutrients (and color) typically lost while steaming beets, will make their way into the lentils. Steam the beets for 10 minutes. 3. Remove the beets from the pot and set aside. Continue to cook the lentils for 20 more minutes, or until the lentils are soft and have absorbed the liquid, stirring periodically to check on the liquid.
4. While the lentils are finishing up, combine the lemon juice, garlic, salt, pepper, and remaining olive oil in a small bowl. 5. Cut or tear the mustard greens into bite-sized pieces and combine with the beets and lemon juice mixture in a large bowl. After combined, divide the greens and beets between two bowls. 6. Don't forget to share the greens stalks with the vegan dogs in your life. 6. When the lentils are finished, divide them between the two bowls, topping the greens and beets. 7. Eat up!

Serves 2 generously.

This dish was super yummy. I loved the purple mustard greens. The "regular" mustard greens I've had were just a bit too bitter, and these seemed to be less so. They added a nice horseradish-y flavor to the dish, which really complimented the sweetness of the beets. And what can I say about the lemon/garlic combination? Heavenly.

Additional note: DocDufresne picked up the purple mustard greens and a few other items (which may also make a blog appearance this week) this weekend from a great urban farm called Greensgrow Farms. This place was created on a vacant lot in the "Port Fishington" area of Philadelphia. It's really quite awesome and they often have vegan cookies from North Port Fishington Cookie Factory. So yum.


  1. This looks great! And I love your weekly theme!

  2. wow! great idea for a weekly theme!! I love using new ingredients too... I think it's especially exciting as a vegan to feel like there is a whole world of ingredients and flavors to explore... rather than feeling like our choices are restricted. also, I love your doggies.

  3. Wow. Looks delicious. Beets scare me, but I've had then cooked South East Asian style, and I loved them, so I have to keep an open mind about beets. And the dogs are absolutely beautiful. I want to scoop them up off the page and hug them!