Saturday, May 7, 2011

Vegalicious Tacos!

Here is a recipe that is vegan, great for the 21 day cleanse and O SO DELICIOUS, not to mention, pretty easy to make.

You will need the following ingredients:

4 c water
1 c lentils
2 T diced onion
salt, seasoning of your choice
2 T tomato paste
1 T evoo (extra virin olive oil)

3/4 c cherry or grape tomatoes
2 T diced onion
1 clove garlic
1/4 diced fresh jalapeno
1 T lime juice
hint of fresh ginger (optional)

as much cilantro as you like
something to put the taco in - you could use a tortilla; I used leaves of Boston Lettuce; Romaine would work well too.

First I got the lentils cooking by bringing 4 cups of water to boil, then added the lentils and onion and salt (I am not a pepper lover, but you could add it now if you liked it) and I used a shake of cumin and some southwest seasoning that had cayenne and chipotle.

While the lentils were cooking, about 30 minutes, I made the salsa by adding the following to my Vita Mix, or a food processor would be great too:
the tomatoes, onion, garlic, jalapeno, lime and cilantro.  (if you have it, toss in a hint of ginger to kick it up, if not, no worries) - give it a brief whirl and voila - an awesome fresh salsa!

After the lentils are cooked (al dente, not mush), drain.  Put 1/2 the mixture into your food process or Vita Mix and add the tomato paste, while processing, drizzle the oil into the mixture, and if you are a cilantro junkie like I am, toss a handful in at the last moment. 

Then blend this mixture with the drained other half of the lentils.  This is your taco filling.

To plate, I used Boston Lettuce, added the lentil mixture, topped with salsa, and then of course, for my taste, more cilantro and a hit of fresh lime.

It was heaven!

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The Story Behind the Garden of Eden Vegan Blog

For those of you who knew me prior to December 30, 2009, I was a veteran of the fast food culinary institute. My son, when he lived with me would ask if I had ordered the "Shabbat pizza" yet as the sun was setting Friday nights.

My idea of a good meal was a McFish sandwich, fries with extra salt, and a medium diet coke.

Everything was better covered in a rich creamy sauce and the idea of a naked baked potato was as foreign to me as walking naked in Manhattan.

In June of 2009 I decided to formally become a vegetarian. Although I had dabbled with this, it was not until I read Skinny Bitch that the gauntlet was thrown.

Now being a vegetarian does not sign you up for good health. I was proof of that. Chubby when I started, I indulged in pizza, french fries, cheese, cheese, butter, cheese, pizza......and became very over weight, tipping the Toledos at 200 pounds at 5'4". And taking an assortment of meds for cholesterol and GERD and who knows what else.

As the decade was waning, and with my 60th birthday approaching in the year 2010, there was a perfect storm that snapped my beak and got me in gear. The same friend who gave me Skinny Bitch, turned me on to the John McDougall website. At the same time, there was a Grand Round lecture at the hospital where I work on the book Eat to Live, and at the same time, I was tired of how I looked and felt and needed to make a change.

I regret that I did not start this blog when I changed my lifestyle, but it is better late than never.

My weight is down about 35 pounds, my size has gone from a tight 16 to a loose 12. And I am on no meds, although my vegetarian doctor and I will review my blood work within this month to see if I need anything (like b12) boosted.

I began as a Vegan Minus. Or what I call a Garden of Eden Vegan.

As you know, a Vegan eats no animals nor animal products - none. But then I subtracted oil, sugar, and processed foods.

That is a big subtraction -- but it is this subtraction that helped with weight loss, lack of cravings, increased energy, health, and vibrancy.

Now I am dabbling in raw foods and have signed up to learn with Russell James (google him).

I like the taste and health aspect of raw foods, but worry about the increased calories. So I will (hopefully) use the raw creations as a supplement to my Gan (Hebrew for Garden -- I am in a Hebrew mood today) Eden Vegan lifestyle.

My doctor said that I should write a book about this since most of her patients need it. I said, "Who, or how many, would want to do this?" We shall see. It has been easy (no cravings) and exciting as life and energy unfold before me, just as it was meant to be. (It didn't unfold over a fried fish sandwich, extra tarter sauce.)

Join me or not. Walk with me the whole journey, day trips, part of it, or not. This is my 60th year -- buckle up life, here I come.