Lentil

Zucchini Pasta with Lentils

June 19, 2014

Vegan lunches can -- and should -- be a lot more interesting than bare salads or carrot sticks and hummus. New Veganism columnist Gena Hamshaw will be sharing inspiration for midday meals that stave off both hunger and boredom.

Today: Bulk up your summer pasta with hearty lentils. 

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Zucchini pasta is about as perfect a summer lunch as they come: It’s refreshing, it’s easy to prepare, it’s endlessly versatile (you can add whatever you’ve got at home), and it’s fun to make and eat. It also gets bonus points for being pretty. The thing is, raw zucchini strands don't make for the most filling midday meal, so lately, I’ve been adding either a whole grain (cooked wheatberries or quinoa, mostly) or a legume (lentils, chickpeas, black beans, whatever). The dish is every bit as summery, but just a little heartier. 

More: Take a cue from Gena's book and pair your salad with this striped tea towel.

I’m finding that cooked brown lentils pair really nicely with a simple raw marinara sauce. The one you see above is just a large beefsteak tomato, quartered and blended with half of a large bell pepper, about a quarter cup of oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, sea salt, pepper, about two tablespoons of olive oil, and a pitted date for sweetness. It’s so easy to make, and it tastes pretty authentic for a sauce that hasn’t simmered for even a minute. 

Photo by Gena Hamshaw

8 Comments

Michele March 24, 2015
This was rated best by "America's Test Kitchen" for creating vegetable strands.<br />http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0007Y9WHQ/ref=ox_sc_act_title_5?ie=UTF8&psc=1&smid=ATVPDKIKX0DER
 
Tarragon June 19, 2014
Is the zucchini pasta served uncooked?
 
sexyLAMBCHOPx June 20, 2014
It's raw. " The thing is, raw zucchini strands don't make for the most filling midday meal, so lately, I’ve been adding either a whole grain (cooked wheatberries or quinoa, mostly) or a legume (lentils, chickpeas, black beans, whatever)."
 
Author Comment
Gena H. June 19, 2014
Hi everyone! A word about making zucchini noodles: you can do it by using a regular vegetable peeler to create long, thin strips. I describe one method in this post: http://www.choosingraw.com/raw-foods-how-to-zucchini-tagliatelle-with-a-recipe/<br /><br />I like to use a "spiralizer," which does all the work for you. My preferred model is the Joyce Chen saladacco slicer: http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B0000DDVYE?pc_redir=1403082617&robot_redir=1<br /><br />It makes very thin, angel hair type pasta. Most people prefer the Paderno spirooli: http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B0007Y9WHQ?pc_redir=1403045598&robot_redir=1<br /><br />It's not my preference, but it's also a great kitchen tool. I hope this helps!
 
seth10597 June 19, 2014
How do you make the zucchini spaghetti? what type of tool do you use?
 
Author Comment
Gena H. June 19, 2014
Hi Seth! See comment above.
 
HalfPint June 19, 2014
@Gena, is there a kitchen tool to make those thin uniform zucchini noodles?
 
Author Comment
Gena H. June 19, 2014
@halfpint, see comment above :)