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Starchy Low-Budget Lentil Stew

Happy Earth Kitchen ©

Seasonal eating part III

This meal happened because of the weather. The temperatures are (finally) dropping to seasonal averages, which for me is way too cold already. Although I eat raw foods most of the time (I can have smoothiebowls for dinner days in a row and never get bored), I’m definitely not strict about it. I do love cooked starches like potatoes, rice and root vegetables on my plate as well, especially on colder days. Personally I don’t eat legumes too often because of my digestive issues, but when cooked right legumes like lentils can be a wonderful source of nutrients. By soaking dried lentils first, rinsing them thoroughly and by cooking it long and slow, digestive issues can be prevented. So I went ahead and gave this Turkish family recipe of the classic ‘lentil-vermicelli soup’ a serious twist and came up with something different, a lentil stew with starchy veggies that still has mum’s signature: full of flavor, comforting, soft, filling and warming. Perfect.

Happy Earth Kitchen ©

Serves: 2
Allergens: dairy-free / gluten-free / soy-free / no added oils
Diet: Fits within a Whole Food Plant Based diet (Starch Solution, Forks over Knives etc.)


1 cup dried green lentils
1 carrot diced
1 onion diced
1 stalk celery chopped
1 big or 2 small potatoes diced
1 tbsp tomato puree
1 tbsp Turkish sweet salça*
1 tsp dried mint
1 tsp masala
1 liter vegetable broth or water 

* Salça is a Turkish sun dried red pepper paste, made from sweet peppers or spicy peppers.  A jar of ‘biber salçasi’ can be found at any Turkish market, just be aware that there is a sweet and spicy version. If salça is not available to you, you can use paprika powder instead.


Step 1
Soak lentils overnight in a bowl of warm water with a couple of tablespoons vinegar. Soaking lentils is not necessary, but this step will help break down indigestible starches and thus will make the dish more kind to your stomach.

Step 2
– Stew onion, carrots and celery in a bit of water until the onion turns translucent and the water has evaporated.
– Add the paprika paste and the tomato puree, add the spices, stir.
– Give the lentils a good rinse and add them to the pan.
– Stir for 1 or 2 minutes, until everything is mixed well.
– Add 1 liter vegetable broth or 1 liter hot water to the pan.
– Bring it to a boil.
– Simmer, add potatoes and let cook slowly for 1 hour with lid on.
– Turn of heat (season with salt and pepper if desired) and let it rest for 30 minutes before serving it.

This dish will taste even better the day after, so making a bigger batch will not only save you time the next day, but will also extra give that little extra on the taste buds.

With Love from The Happy Earth Kitchen                     

Author Happy Earth Kitchen (Yonca)

More posts by Happy Earth Kitchen (Yonca)

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