Spicy Red Lentil Stew

Spicy Red Lentil Stew

Today, I really wanted to post something about cooperation. It’s been a rough day with some really rigid, frustrating personalities making life difficult just for the sake of making life difficult…

On the chance of sounding preach-y, I’m going to pass and just post another recipe.  [Insert cheesy comment about food and spices combining and working together to create something delicious.]

This stew is a great winter-warmer while we hold out for spring.  We were shoveling our driveway this weekend for what I hoped would be the last time (silly me!), and it felt really good to be outside.  Not only was it warmer than it has been, but the chickadees were happily singing, the goldfinches were flitting about the feeders, and even our lone purple finch gave a little song.  While it seems to be eons away under all that snow, spring really is right around the corner!

3 tbsp coconut oil (or olive oil)
1 yellow onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
3 celery stalks, chopped
3 large carrots, chopped
2 tsp chili powder
1 dried red chili, crushed
1 1/2 tbsp cumin
1 lb dried red lentils, rinsed
1 tsp salt
5  cups vegetable broth
1 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped
1 lime, sliced
homemade yogurt (optional)

1) Heat the coconut oil in a large stock pot over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, celery, and carrots and cook, stirring occasionally for another 5 minutes.
2) Add the chili powder, cumin, and dried red chili and cook until aromatic, about 1 minute.  Add the lentils and broth.  Bring to a boil, then turn the heat down to a simmer. Cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the lentils are soft, about 15 – 20 minutes.
3) Stir in the salt, juice of 1/2 the lime, and 1/2 the chopped cilantro.
4) Keeping it vegan?  Garnish with remaining cilantro and serve!  Looking for a little more? Garnish with remaining cilantro, a spoonful of yogurt, and serve!  (A spoonful of sour cream instead of  yogurt would probably also be delicious!)

I'm a Gull.
Seriously. Spring is coming…

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