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BBQ Seitan & Red Lentil Hummus Bowl

I'm in a bowl phase of life - meaning that I just want to eat all my meals from big bowls, especially ones I can balance on my belly while reading a book or watching Netflix*. I even bought special white bowls for the purpose. They are larger than a typical cereal or soup bowl but would be too small to feed more than one very hungry person. I love them so much that when they are all in the dishwasher, I may or may not postpone my next meals until they are clean.


On my old website I had a whole post on the art of making Buddha Bowls. It was one of my most popular posts actually. But since I burned that blog to the ground in the great Purge of 2019, I will have to tell you about Buddha Bowls once again. In a nutshell, a good Buddha Bowl meal is going to have one starch, such as rice, potatoes, or sweet potato; one protein source; at least one vegetable; and then something fattier like avocado, nuts or seeds, tahina, or hummus. You can assemble these meal bowls with whatever leftovers you find in your kitchen, or do as I do and create several containers of possibilities each week and then mix and match as inspiration guides you.


In today's yummy bowl, I used leftover rice, leftover steamed broccoli, BBQ seitan (a batch of which I make every week), and my legendary red lentil hummus. You used to have to attend one of my cooking classes to get that hummus recipe but yalla, no more boundaries, no more rules, here ya go:



Firstly, the seitan. This isn't so much a recipe as a description of my process. I buy those frozen blocks of seitan by Teva Deli. They look like this:


I thaw this in the fridge overnight. Then I cube into bite-sized cubes as in the above picture. I toss the cubes with some soy sauce, store-bought BBQ sauce, garlic powder and a few drops of liquid smoke. You can season however you like, that is just my favorite way. Once the cubes are all coated, I bake them in a 180C (350F) oven for 20-25 minutes until the edges are turning golden and crispy.


For those who are unfamiliar with seitan, it is simply the protein portion of wheat, after all the starch has been rinsed off. What is left is the pure gluten and it is almost entirely protein. Not only is it delicious and "meaty", it is one of the largest sources of protein in my vegan diet. I know some people are afraid of gluten, but unless you have a known intolerance or Celiac disease, it is perfectly healthy to eat.


Anyway, after cooking, I place the seitan cubes in the fridge and then use them over the course of the week in dishes such as this. You can also make your own seitan with vital wheat gluten, water and seasonings - just look up recipes on google - it's super easy to do.


OK, the hummus. This stuff is insanely delicious, super fast and easy to make. If there are ingredients listed here than you don't like, feel free to make whatever substitution your little heart desires.


Red Lentil Hummus

Ingredients:

1 cup dried red lentils

2 3/4 cup water

1/3 cup sun-dried tomatoes (the dry ones, not the oil-packed) OR roasted red pepper

3-4 cloves of garlic, peeled

1 1/2 tsp cumin

1 tsp turmeric

1/2 tsp salt

1/4 cup olive oil (can omit if you want lower fat)

1/4 cup tahina (golmit - not mixed with water)

Juice of 1/2 a lemon


Preparation:

1. In a medium saucepan, combine red lentils, water, sun-dried tomatoes (or peppers), garlic cloves, cumin, and turmeric.

2. Bring to a boil, lower heat to simmer, cover, and let cook 15-20 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes or so to make sure the water has not all boiled out and your mixture is scorching itself to the bottom of your pot. I am serious. DO NOT WALK AWAY from this pot!

3. Once the water is absorbed and the lentils are mushy, remove lid, remove from the heat, and allow to cool for 10 minutes or so. The mixture will thicken as it cools.

4. Place slightly cooled mixture into your food processor and add the olive oil, tahina, and lemon juice.

5. Blend until totally smooth.

6. Salt to taste.

7. Serve warm or store in fridge for up to 1 week. Again, it will thicken more as it cools, so don't be upset if it seems too runny when warm. The oil and tahina will solidify when cold.


NOTE: You can add the garlic raw to the food processor step. I just don't love raw garlic personally.


To assemble the bowl in the picture above, I put in as follows:

1/2 cup leftover rice

1 cup leftover steamed broccoli

100g BBQ Seitan

1/3 cup Red Lentil Hummus

This delicious and filling meal contains 386 calories, 41g carbohydrate, 10g fat, 35g of protein, and 10g fiber. You will be satisfied for hours!


*This final note is for my fellow pop culture geeks who will take nothing from this post but to wonder what I am reading and watching with that bowl perched on my belly. Current books: Sookie Stackhouse series. Current Netflix: The Witcher. Yes, there is a theme. Now you know me just a little better. ;-)

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