Many meat eaters feel like they can’t go vegetarian or have a low-meat diet because they don’t feel they could get enough protein to take it’s place. This is so silly! There are so many great plant based protein sources like legumes and pulses. Legumes include soy, alfalfa, peanuts etc and pulses include dried seeds, lentils, split peas and dried beans. Both are great sources of fiber, pholate, potassium, iron and vitamins. They are low in fat and glycemic carbohydrates so keep you full for longer.
They are also great for the soil and essentially, the environment as a whole. Lentils etc have been labeled “Green Manure” by some as they literally add nitrogen to the soil. They are a great crop to grow sustainably as they replenish soil and can create crops which will go on to feed the bellies of many.
As a vegetarian, it is important to get used to legumes and pulses as they are amazing sources of protein and are super cheap.
Here is a recipe I use to make a delicious Lentil and Mushroom ragu.
Lentil, Mushroom and Kale Ragu
1 Tbsp Coconut Oil (any kind of cooking oil)
One can/Two cups of cooked lentils (any kind but Du Poy add a nice texture)
6 med-large mushrooms
Half a red onion (Sliced or diced)
2 tsp of Garlic (or two fresh cloves)
3 Cups of Kale
1/2 Cup of wine (red or white)
1/8 Cup of chopped herbs (Thyme, Oregano, Sage)
1/2 Cup of full fat cream, sour cream or coconut cream/milk, creme fraiche (any kind of thickening, creamy ingredient)
A handful of any fresh greenery you need to get rid of (We used chopped up Brussel sprouts)
- Add oil, onion and garlic to pan. Cook for around 4 mins
- Add sliced mushroom, brown for around 5 mins
- Add herbs, kale and wine and cook down for around 10 mins
- Add cream and simmer for a further 10 mins
- Add cooked lentils, stir around until Lentils are heated through
- Serve with crusty bread, an egg cooked on top or just by itself.
All images courtesy of EC, creator of this blog