Lebanese Lentil Rice & Roasted Veggies

Middle Eastern foods are some of my all-time favorites!  This dish crossed my path just a couple months back and it instantly became a new favorite!  So simple, so hearty, and so tasty!

About two months ago, Chris and I were staying in Philadelphia and got some Lebanese take-away to enjoy in our hotel room.  When I placed my order the man on the phone asked, “Are you vegans?” To which I replied, “yes,” and he let me know that we should then order the lentil-rice instead of the basmati rice because the latter was not vegan.  I thanked him and placed our order, wondering if I would even like lentil rice– a dish I had never heard of.  Everything we ate was delicious! (The restaurant is called “Apricot Stone,” if you’re ever in the area!)  And what a delightful surprise awaited us!  It was love at first bite!  I was therefore set to the task of creating a low-fat version for us to enjoy at home.

I paired it with colorful, local vegetables that I tossed with seasonings and roasted.  The zucchinis made the meal more filling and the sweet tomatoes added a burst of flavor in every bite!  We ate ours with some added fixings we had in the refrigerator: roasted red pepper humus, fresh parsley and tomatoes from the garden, and leftover onion.  Savory and filling!  Enjoy!

Lebanese Lentil Rice 2

Lebanese Lentil Rice & Roasted Veggies

  • Servings: 4
  • Print

Ingredients

    FOR THE VEGETABLES
  • 1 large zucchini
  • 2 small yellow squashes
  • 2 c sweet grape or cherry tomatoes
  • 1/4 c vegetable broth
  • juice of 1 lemon (2-3 tbsp)
  • 1 tsp Greek seasoning
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp smoked paprika
  • FOR THE RICE
  • 1 C uncooked brown rice
  • 1 c lentils
  • 1 1/2 c vegetable broth
  • 2 c water
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1 large red onion
  • 1-2 tbsp minced garlic
  • juice of 1 lemon (1-2 tbsp)
  • 1 tsp salt-free seasoning
  • 3/4 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • OPTIONAL TOPPINGS
  • 1/4-1 c humus
  • 1/4 c fresh parsley
  • 1/4 c fresh tomatoes
  • 1/4 c chopped sweet onion
  • 1 tbsp hot sauce

Directions


1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. Mix together the vegetable broth, lemon juice, and seasonings for the vegetables in a large bowl. Chop squashes into bite size pieces and toss in the mixture. Use a slotted spoon to transfer veggies to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Cut tomatoes into halves and toss in the remaining mixture. Use the slotted spoon to add tomatoes to the pan, spreading the vegetables in an even layer trying not to over lap (a little over lap is okay). Bake for 35-40 minutes, tossing half-way through, until vegetables are tender, and slightly brown around the edges.
3. While vegetables are baking, cook the rice in a rice cooker or according to the package’s instructions, omitting any added oil or margarine.
4. In a medium sauce pan, combine lentils, vegetable broth, water, onion powder, and garlic powder. Bring to a boil over high heat and then reduce to a low simmer and cook for 25-35 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until all liquid has either been absorbed or evaporated and lentils are tender.  If lentils are still not tender and no liquid remains in the pot, add more water, 1/4 c at a time, as needed. (Mine took 31 minutes with the recommended amount of liquid.)
5. Carmalize the onion: Slice red onion into 1- 1 1/2 inch long slices and add to a large pot.  Cook over medium/low heat (adding water 1 tbsp at a time to prevent sticking) until onion is a deep purpley pink and tender. (Mine took 25 minutes.)  Add minced garlic about half way through cooking.
6. Add cooked rice and lentils to the onion pot (after draining off any excess liquid).  Add remaining seasonings and lemon juice. Stir to combine. Serve with roasted vegetables and optional toppings of your choosing.

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