From the monthly archives:

October 2011

Nearly 3 inches of snow in Central Park, NY in October. Record setting snow calls for comfort food and do I have a doozie of a recipe to fit the bill!. My choice this night was a family favorite, something my mom would make on a cold night as we were growing up: Lentils with Whole-Grain Pasta and Escarole, a delicious, low-glycemic, high fiber meal, one that will help your blood sugar remain steady and keep your digestive tract healthy. Whole grains not only fill you up faster so you don’t eat as much, they’re also an excellent source of dietary fiber. With simple carbs, blood sugars spike causing a big rush of energy, followed by a sharp drop, making you feel lethargic and grumpy. Unlike complex carbs aka the good carbs, refined carbs can’t provide the body with sustained energy, and over time may contribute to illnesses such as diabetes and insulin resistance. Selecting healthier alternatives offers so many benefits; a body that will thrive, and peace of mind. Guiltless eating makes everything taste better.
PS-My favorite lentils are made by Picuezo. They’re tasty and super easy!

1 cup lentils
1 cup vegetable or chicken broth
2 cloves garlic, minced or finely chopped
1 tablespoon fresh parsley, finely chopped
1 bunch fresh escarole, washed and chopped
About a pound of whole-grain pasta (orzo or macaroni of your choice)
salt and pepper to taste
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Freshly grated cheese (optional)

Heat up a large pot of water for pasta. In the meantime, over medium heat, in a medium sized saucepot, add lentils and vegetable or chicken broth. Let warm up for about ten minutes, then add garlic and parsley, salt and pepper and stir to combine. In a separate saucepot add about a quarter cup of water, let heat up and add escarole, cooking only for a few minutes until vegetable is fork tender and a bright green color. Drain and add to lentil mixture, combine adding a bit more salt and pepper to taste if needed. Add pasta to boiling water and cook according to package directions. When done, al dente, (to the tooth) is best, drain over a small dish to grab some water, and return to pot. Add lentil mixture and olive oil, stir to combine. Add a little more cooking water and/or olive oil if desired. Top with freshly grated cheese and mangia! (Serves 4) A healthy side salad with this dish makes a nice meal that’s easy to whip up and packed with nutrients.

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