Lentil Dal (for Freezing!)

This aromatic lentil dal is flavorful and healthy. And by doing the prep work in advance and freezing the mix-ins, you can have a simple protein-rich dinner on the table in 20 minutes.

Lentil Dal for Freezing // savvyeat.comWe’ve got a new favorite vegetarian dinner over here, and it is this lentil dal. Packed with cilantro, ginger, jalapeño pepper and coconut milk, it is flavorful and incredibly easy to pull together. We usually serve it with some naan and roasted carrots, but I often find myself having the leftovers with just a side salad as a quick lunch as well.

I haven’t tried freezing the lentil dal as a fully cooked dish – I’m just not sure how well the texture would hold up. However, I have found a way to save a bunch of hands-on prep time and make this super easy for anyone to cook up, regardless of their cooking skills.

TO FREEZE LENTIL DAL:

1. Quadruple the recipe and pulse all of the aromatics and spices together in a mini food processor. You could triple or double the recipe or whatever, but doing it in increments of four means you can just throw in a single seeded jalapeño pepper for each set of four and call it a day.

2. Freeze the chopped aromatics in an ice cube tray, dividing them evenly to create four seasoning cubes.

3. Use the rest of the ice cube tray to freeze coconut milk. You’ll want 8-12 coconut milk ice cubes.

4. When everything is frozen, transfer the cubes to a freezer bag and label it as such:

Lentil Dal.

Cook 1 cup lentils with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 3 cups water: boil and simmer for 20 minutes. In the last few minutes, stir in 1 seasoning cube and 2-3 cubes of coconut milk. Serve warm.

I’m loving this for three reasons. First, I’m now at the point of pregnancy where being on my feet in the kitchen for any considerable amount of time is highly uncomfortable for my feet and hips. Secondly, this lentil dal will be a good quick lunch or dinner that nearly anyone can help me prepare if my hands are full while I’m taking care of the baby, or that I can prep one-handed if needed. Finally, it is super cheap to prep for multiple batches of this high-protein, flavorful dish. Basically, it’s a win all around!

Lentil Dal (for Freezing!)

Cook Time: 20 minutes

This aromatic lentil dal is flavorful and healthy. And by doing the prep work in advance and freezing the mix-ins, you can have a simple protein-rich dinner on the table in 20 minutes.

Slightly adapted from The New Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone by Deborah Madison.

Ingredients

  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 jalapeño pepper, seeded
  • 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro
  • 1/2” piece of fresh ginger, peeled
  • 1 cup red lentils
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 cups water
  • 3 tablespoons coconut milk

Instructions

  1. Pulse the garlic, jalapeño, cilantro and ginger together in a food processor until coarsely chopped.
  2. Mix the lentils with the salt and cover with water. Cover and bring to a boil, then remove the lid and simmer for 20 minutes. In the last few minutes, stir in the coarsely chopped aromatics and the coconut milk. Serve hot.

Make Ahead and Storage

Freeze the aromatics and coconut milk in an ice cube tray for quick and easy dinners down the line.

http://www.savvyeat.com/lentil-dal/

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Black Bean and Spinach Enchiladas

Black bean and spinach enchiladas are filled with a seasoned black bean spread, and are easily made dairy-free!

Black Bean and Spinach Enchiladas // Savvy Eats

I haven’t quite figured out our grocery routine here yet. I was a bit spoiled in Ithaca – we got our meat and seasonal produce at the farmers’ market every Saturday, and could pick up everything else in a single trip to Wegman’s or the co-op. Now that we’re in Minnesota, however, I have so many options – and nothing that works as a one-shop-stop like Wegman’s did.

I also haven’t found the most affordable source for local, sustainably-raised meat yet. So while we continue our search, I’ve been working more and more vegetarian dinners into our weekly meal plans. Beans and lentils are incredibly affordable, and filled with fiber, minerals and protein.

These enchiladas come out of a mix of recipes from The New Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone by Deborah Madison and the Bluephies cookbook. We love the spinach enchiladas from Bluephies, but they contain cream cheese, and I was looking for a recipe I could easily make dairy-free (to make them dairy-free, just leave the cheese off the tops!). So instead, I made a black bean spread to take the place of the cream cheese. Thanks to all the seasoning, was a definite win without being too spicy.  For the sauce on top, you can use a storebought red sauce or make your own using a recipe like this enchilada sauce from Gimme Some Oven.

Black Bean and Spinach Enchiladas

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 18 enchiladas

Black Bean and Spinach Enchiladas

Black bean and spinach enchiladas are filled with a seasoned black bean spread, and are easily made dairy-free!

Ingredients

  • 1 1/4 cups cooked black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup low-sodium vegetable stock
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 poblano pepper, diced
  • 1 cup diced red onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 10 ounces spinach (if using frozen, it should be thawed and drained)
  • 18 6” flour tortillas
  • Red enchilada sauce (canned or homemade)
  • Shredded cheddar cheese, optional

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F and grease a 9” x 13” baking pan.
  2. Puree the beans with the vegetable stock, cumin, paprika, chili powder and salt.
  3. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the peppers and onion and sauté for 5-7 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender and beginning to brown.
  4. Add the garlic, oregano and spinach. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the spinach is wilted and warmed through. This should take just 1-2 minutes for spinach that was thawed from frozen. Fresh spinach will take more like 2-3 minutes.
  5. Stir in the black bean puree and heat until warmed through, 1-2 minutes. Remove the filling from the heat.
  6. Fill each tortilla with 2-3 tablespoons of filling, creating a line of filling towards one end of the tortilla. Beginning at the end with the filling, tightly roll up the enchilada and place, seam-side down, in the baking pan. Repeat with the rest of the filling and tortillas. You will either need to do this in two batches, or use a second baking pan to fit them all.
  7. Spoon enchilada sauce over the tops of the enchiladas. If you don’t need these to be dairy-free, top with shredded cheddar cheese to taste.
  8. Bake at 350°F for 13-16 minutes. Serve warm.
http://www.savvyeat.com/black-bean-spinach-enchiladas/

Here’s how to freeze enchiladas for later!

 

Looking for more freezer meals to make now and freeze later? Try one of these 40 freezer-friendly recipes.

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