Friday, July 29, 2011

A Veg Friendly South Beach Dinner

Because of the South Beach Diet, I've been eating a lot of meat very suddenly. I've started missing my vegetarian days. Last night I decided to "beachify" one of my favorite vegetarian recipes: "Snobby Joes" from the Veganomicon cookbook.  You should buy this cookbook whether you're a vegetarian or not. I probably use this cookbook more than any other cookbook I own.
See my adaptation of the recipe below.  You can find the original recipe over at the Post Punk Kitchen. Its your classic Sloppy Joe but instead of meat, it uses lentils! Fantastic!

Vegetarian Sloppy Joes
Servings: 6-8
Serving size: 1/4-1/2 cup

  • 1 cup of dry lentils
  • 1 onion 
  • 1 green pepper
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic
  • 1 tbsp. of olive oil or olive oil spray
  • 1 tbsp. of chile powder (original recipe uses 3)
  • 1-2 tsp. of cayenne pepper (not in original recipe, I think it gives it that extra kick)
  • 2 tsp. of oregano
  • 8 oz. of tomato sauce
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 1 tbsp. yellow mustard
  • Optional: Maple syrup to taste.*  
  • Optional: Salt to taste*
  • Green lettuce leaves for serving*
  1. Place lentils in a saucepan and cover with water.  Bring water to a boil and cook covered until lentils are soft.  Generally takes 20-30 minutes.  Sometimes lentils cook differently so make sure you test a few times before you stop cooking.
  2. While the lentils are cooking, finely dice the onion, green pepper, and garlic.  Don't use a food processor for this, it will come out to liquid-y.
  3. Spray or pour oil in a saucepan.  Cook pepper, onion for a few minutes.  Add garlic.  
  4. Add in the spices, tomato sauce, and tomato paste.  Continue cooking for 5-10 minutes. 
  5. Add mustard, (maple syrup, and salt) to taste.
For nutrition information go here.
*In order to make it South Beach friendly I omitted the maple syrup and served it on my favorite new bread replacement lettuce!  Generally, I find it doesn't need salt and I prefer to keep things lower in sodium.  The original recipe includes salt and maple syrup.  Another option is to use sugar-free syrup if you really want some added sweetness.
Also, remember that during Phase 1, lentils are limited to 1/3-1/2 cup per day.

For dinner, I served it with some left-over mashed cauliflower and green beans.

It was sooooo yummy that I had some of the left overs for lunch today too. This time I served it with a small bleu cheese salad.

Anyone else eating anything in lettuce these days?

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