with vegetables & za'atar
A classic middle eastern dish spelled in a variety of ways is made with lentils, fried onions and rice. Our version includes riced vegetables for some added texture, color, and nutrition. It's topped with a variety of choices such as toasted almonds, chopped fresh cilantro, a drizzle of olive oil or even a little yogurt or sour cream. It's not the most photogenic dish, but don't pass it by! It has so much flavor with the spice called Za'atar. Za'atar is a blend of spices and sesame seeds. It has a mild and unique flavor that adds to the personality of this dish. If you don't have it, you can order it online (amazon.com has it) or visit a specialty market that would carry it. So many of the ingredients can be substituted for something equally as amazing - we are really excited to know what you've done! Don't forget to add #cooklikeayogi to your post!
(preheat oven to 350. Place 2 C. sliced or slivered almonds on a baking sheet. Allow them to cook for 4-5 minutes until they are golden brown. Stay close by so they don't burn. Allow to cool. This can be done well in advance, and can be stored in an air tight container
2 C. green or brown lentils, rinsed
2 C. brown or white rice (I used basmati)
3 large yellow onions, thinly sliced (I used a mandoline)
olive oil (enough to coat the pan you are using - I used a large rectangular double griddle + plus extra to drizzle on top after it's plated)
1/2 C. riced cauliflower
1/2 C. riced broccoli
1/2 C. riced sweet potato
3 cloves minced fresh garlic
2 tsp. Za'atar seasoning (or a mix of oregano/marjoram/thyme)
1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper (optional)
2 tsp. pink himalayan sea salt
Cilantro or mint, chopped
Fresh lemon or lime juice
Topping options: olive oil, Za'atar, cayenne, sliced avocado, plain yogurt, dairy or non-dairy, or sour cream (optional) and a squeeze of lemon or lime juice to garnish
In a large soup pot, heat 6 C. water to a rapid boil and add the lentils. Return to a boil then cook for 25 minutes, or until soft (but not super mushy). In a large soup pot heat the rice according to package directions. Meanwhile, prep the onions by slicing them very thin manually or use a mandolin to make the slicing go faster. Coat the frying pan with oil (you may need to do 2 batches if you don't have a extra large pan). Allow the onions to get very crispy. Could take anywhere from 25-40 minutes, depending on how thin they are sliced. Keep an eye on them and when crispy, transfer to a plate that is lined with a paper towel. Put them aside until lentils and rice are cooked.
During the last minute or two of cooking the lentils, add the riced vegetables to heat thoroughly. Drain the lentils/vegetables in a fine mesh strainer and transfer them to the cooked rice. Turn the heat off and add the spices, salt, garlic and half of the crispy onions and stir well.
A hearty scoop of the lentil/rice mixture to the plate. Top with the following options: Toasted almonds, some remaining crispy onions, chopped herb, small drizzle of olive oil, a sprinkle of za'atar and/or cayenne, a squeeze of lemon or lime juice and a small dollop of yogurt/sour cream.
This recipe serves 6-8, depending on the portion size. If you only need to serve 2-4, cut the recipe in half.