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[dropcap style=”font-size: 60px; color: #9b9b9b;”] A[/dropcap] few years ago I spoke at the Melbourne writers festival. The main focus of the talk was about blogging and business. To be honest it wasn’t my greatest work. I was super nervous and stumbled over my words.
But in the end it didn’t matter because I had a great time listening to the other speakers. And I met some really inspiring people.
One of those people I’ve remained good friends with. Her name is Lesh and she blogs over at https://leshkaran.com/ about her journey from eating most things out of a packet to being,in her words, a ‘real food nut’.
I love Lesh’s blog and really encourage you to check it out.
Today it gives me great pleasure to share an interview I recorded with the lovely Lesh. We talk about her real food journey AND her tips for you to get more whole foods in your life.
Watch interview on YouTube Here
Links mentioned in the interview:
If you’re interested in picking up a copy of Nourish go to:
Lesh Karan – The Mindful Foodie.
And in case you’d like a taster of the type of recipes in the book, here’s my version of Lesh’s nourishing dahl for you to try…
Lesh’s Nourishing Dahl
One of the things I love about Lesh is that her family background is Indian – one of my favourite cuisines that I am keen to learn more about! I’ve been looking for a good authentic dahl recipe for a long time. I’m happy to say this one ticks all the boxes.
It does have a few more ingredients than my usual Stonesoup recipes but I think in this case its worth it. Although, I’ve also included a super simple option in the variations below.
Enough for 4
300g (1 1/2cups) red lentils
1 bunch baby carrots, chopped
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp ground cumin
1 teaspoon salt
4 cloves garlic
4 cups water or stock
4 handfuls baby spinach
2-4 tablespoons lemon juice
1-2 tablespoons soy sauce
natural yoghurt, to serve
1. Wash lentils thoroughly under the cold tap and drain.
2. Place lentils in a medium saucepan with the water or stock. Bring to a simmer, skimming the foam that arises.
3. Add carrots, turmeric, cumin, salt and garlic.
4. Simmer for another 15-20 mins more until the lentils and carrots are totally cooked. Make sure you stir along the way so the dahl doesn’t stick.
5. Stir in the spinach leaves and allow them to wilt.
6. Taste and season with lemon juice and soy. Serve with yoghurt.
dairy-free / vegan – use coconut yoghurt or mashed avocado instead.
carnivore – serve as a side to a meat based curry or add in a few handfuls of cooked chicken.
different veg – feel free to play around. I love the carrots though.
budget – use water instead of the stock (i did).
5 ingredients – just use the lentils, turmeric,
different spices – use a mild curry powder instead of the spices listed.
tiny person-friendly – think about skipping the spinach.
What about you? Do you have any tips for eating more whole foods? I’d love to hear about them in the comments below…
ps. The links in this email are affiliate links so if you do decide to buy Lesh’s book, you’ll be supporting Stonesoup as well! We both really appreciate it.
Hi Jules – I’ve been reading your blog for a while now and love it. I like how you focus on whole foods, your recipes are great, and ingredients are easy to find in local grocery store. I love that you offer online courses. I tried to enroll in one of your online sessions, but it was already full. I’ll look out for the next session. Thanks for a great website.
Amy Stephens, RD
Thanks for dropping by :)
The next course is starting early March… will have more details in the next few weeks
“5 ingredients – just use the lentils, turmeric, ”
Woops April! Thanks for picking up the error… Will have to sack my proof reader. Should say lentils, turmeric, garlic, soy & lemon juice.
Also, I think you mean “tiny-person friendly” (move the hyphen), since it’s an alt that’s friendly to tiny people (two words, but one adjective/modifier), not a tiny alt that’s friendly to [all] people. :)
Right! Thx April :)
What are the 5 ingredients for the super simple option?
I tried this receipe on the weekend and loved it. Thank you.
So glad you liked it Maryann!
Thanks for taking the time to let is know
If you want to try something new to your family or friends, try this recipe and for sure they will definitely love it.
Tiny people love spinach! I’m sure that mine would gobble it right up, spinach and all. Can’t wait to try this. We love Indian food:)
That’s good to know Libby! Fergal seems to like spinach too but he pretty much just puts everything in his mouth so that’s not really saying anything :)
Love dahl, will try it, though as carnivore/omnivore would have to have the meat curry with it – just saved a beef curry recipe this week I’m wanting to try, so this may be a weekend idea.
Tips for getting more whole foods in:
I keep several different versions of fermented foods around for easy addition to any dish – I make them myself when I’m feeling I have time, otherwise I buy from reputable companies who are doing traditional raw food fermenting, like Wise Choice here in US – carrots, beets, etc, and other companies sell different flavors of krauts with powerhouse colorful veggies – purple cabbage, red onions, red peppers, purple russian kale, small amounts RAW beets, raw carrots (ideally fermented raw).
Also good, though less easily available perhaps, are small amounts of aronia berries or cranberries all coverd with ghee, coconut oil, coconut milk full fat, or Nutiva Hemp oil (cold) for the balanced omega 6/ omega 3 (3.5 :1 ratio is ideal) – very satisfying, but easy to go overboard on fruit.
I buy or beg bones to make broths in my crock pot, which I keep on for days at times and keep decanting the stock and adding more – can get 5 generations of stock from a couple of chickens – later generations good for soups and cooking other things. I reduce them and save them in fridge in ice-cube sized portions. A good butcher can provide marrow bones free or cheaply, depending on the market for these things. Many veggie scraps accumulated during the week go in to the pot rather than compost, so all the nutrients are saved.
Other veggie trims that might not get used traditionally are great for infusing oils with, or in novel dishes, e.g. fennel fronds are lovely in fritters, as a bed for roasting salmon, in omelettes, etc. I try not to waste anything.
Leftovers go to school with my daughter, and I cook in batches when I can, so some can go in the freezer packaged as portions for ready to go meals when time is short – it does mean spending some concentrated time in the kitchen on the weekend, but I take some weekends off too.
By menu planning and shopping to the menu, not shopping hungry, and refusing to buy packaged goods, it’s pretty easy to eat whole foods. If I remember more tricks, I’ll post again.
Thx for sharing Teresa!
Thanks for this Jules! You saved the day again!! I had nothing planned for dinner and was not feeling inspired. I can always count on your cookbook or website to help me create something out of nothing. The kids and husband said this recipe is “absolutely delicious” and the addition of lemon juice and soy sauce just makes the dish..
So glad you like it Liz!