Food & Nutrition

9 Superfoods You Can Turn into Scrumptious Comfort Food

Easy Peasy Green Lentil Soup with Veggies

lentil soupCourtesy Sahara Rose

This warm and nourishing lentil soup is high in protein, and prevents sugar cravings later on, according to Ketabi, who came up with the recipe. “Lentils are superfoods in Ayurveda and something that can be consumed by any of the mind-body types or Doshas,” she says. Lentils support a healthy cardiovascular system, with various studies suggesting the folate found in this legume helps reduce the incidence of stroke.

The recipe also features in-season carrots and portobello mushrooms. Portobellos are powerful superfoods thanks to their high levels of B vitamins, antioxidants, phytonutrients like CLA and L-ergothioneine, selenium, copper, potassium, phosphorus, and even some plant-based protein.

Ingredients:

1 cup green lentils, soaked at least 15 minutes (but preferably overnight)

5 cups water or vegetable stock

1 tsp salt

2 tbsp olive oil

1 medium onion, diced

2 cloves garlic, minced

¼ tsp cumin

1 tsp fresh ginger, peeled and chopped

2 bay leaves

½ pound asparagus- fresh or frozen (cut off tough ends)

fresh cilantro leaves, to garnish

Your choice veggies:

1 medium-large portobello mushroom, stock, and gills removed, cut into small strips

1 medium carrot, diced (about 1 cup)

2 celery stalks, diced

Instructions:

Cover lentils with water in a bowl and let soak overnight to aid with digestion. After soaking, rinse lentils and place in a large pot with water/stock, and salt. Set aside.

In a medium saucepan, combine the olive oil, onion, garlic, and your choice veggies. (Ketabi uses portobello mushrooms, carrots, and celery.) Cook on medium-high heat until the onions start to become brown, about three minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.

In the pot with the lentils and stock, add the cumin, ginger and bay leaves. Bring to a gentle boil, then simmer on medium-low heat for about 20-25 minutes, stirring occasionally, until lentils are tender. You can also use a pressure cooker to reduce cooking time. Add the chopped asparagus if using them and cook another eight minutes if using fresh; four minutes if using frozen. Asparagus should be bright green and tender—take care not to overcook.

Remove from heat. Serve with fresh cilantro.

Green Superfood Pizza

super greens pizzaCourtesy Jessica Sepel of JSHealth

“I’m all about listening to your body. When you have a craving for pizza… sometimes your body needs pizza!” says recipe creator Sepel. “But instead of making the heavy, cheesy, not-so-great-for-your body version, try this Green Pizza—a gluten-free, dairy-free and nutrient-filled dinner that doesn’t compromise on taste or crunch! Get creative with toppings—leftover roast veggies, mushrooms, or ricotta are delicious additions!”
Ingredients:

2 cups almond meal

1/2 cup LSA or ground flaxseed

1/2 cup chia seeds

1/4 cup crushed almonds

1/4 cup psyllium husk

5 tsp baking powder

2 tsp salt

3 eggs

2 tbsp virgin organic coconut oil

1/4 cup milk or almond milk

2 cups mixed greens e.g. kale, spinach, rocket, silverbeet etc.

1/4 cup good-quality tomato/pasta sauce

2 zucchinis, sliced

1/2 cup shaved parmesan cheese (optional)

3-4 tbsp pesto

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 180° (or 160° if fan-forced).

In a large mixing bowl, mix together the almond meal, LSA/flaxseed, chia seeds, crushed almonds, psyllium, baking powder, and salt. Place the eggs, coconut oil, milk, and greens in a food processor and process until combined, making sure the greens have been very finely chopped.

Slowly add the wet mixture to the dry, stirring until everything is well combined. If the batter is too wet, add extra almond meal. If it is too dry, add more almond milk. Line a baking tray with baking paper. Take out half the mixture and shape into a circular pizza base with a thickness of one to two centimeters; you want it to be thin enough so it gets crispy. Repeat with remaining mixture to make a second pizza.

Bake for 15-20 minutes, until golden around the edges. Remove from oven and cool slightly. Top with tomato sauce, sliced zucchini and parmesan and return to oven for a further 15 minutes, until cheese is golden and bubbling.

Remove pizza from oven, slice and enjoy. Don’t waste your money on these superfoods.

Get the recipe

Vegetable Coconut Curry with Ayurvedic Spices

coconut curryCourtesy Sahara Rose

“Indian food is one of my favorite comfort foods because it’s warm, creamy, and nourishing,” says recipe creator Ketabi. “However, most Indian restaurants use heavy cream, unhealthy oils and/or large amounts of ghee that make it extremely heavy on the digestive system, leading to that post-eating slump.”

This recipe contains two of the biggest superfoods—broccoli and cauliflower—as well as stimulating cayenne pepper to boost your metabolism and keep your body burning calories. The combination of ingredients was intentional, says Ketabi: “Anti-inflammatory turmeric is 50 percent more absorbable by your body when paired with black pepper and two to four times more absorbable when paired with fat like coconut oil. This recipe contains both. Turmeric is also an antidepressant and aids in weight-loss, leaving you happy rather than heavy after this meal.”

Ingredients:

1 Tbsp coconut or olive oil

1 small onion, diced

4 cloves garlic, minced

1 tbsp fresh grated ginger

2 cups broccoli, cauliflower, zucchini, snow peas or bell pepper, diced

1 tbsp curry powder

1/2 tsp cumin

½ tsp turmeric

Pinch cayenne pepper

2 14-ounce cans light coconut milk (sub in full-fat for a richer texture)

1 cup water or vegetable stock

Optional: ½ cup pea sprouts or 2 cups leafy greens

Pinch of pink Himalayan sea salt

Black pepper, to taste

Optional: fresh cilantro and lime as garnishes

Instructions:

Heat a pot to medium heat and add 1 tbsp coconut or olive oil. Add the onion and garlic, stirring until slightly translucent. Add the ginger, vegetables, and spices. Cook and stir continuously until softened for about 5 minutes.

Add coconut milk, water/vegetable stock, and salt. Bring to simmer then reduce heat and cover. Allow to cook for about 12 minutes. If you are including the pea sprouts and/or greens, add those in last for just two minutes so they don’t overcook. Taste and adjust seasonings as desired. Remove from heat and allow to cool before consuming.

You can pair this with quinoa, rice, cauliflower rice, or other healthy grains.

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