Lentil Pumpkin Soup

I have decided to play with lemongrass and curry paste, with these ingredients you can turn this soup into Indian dal or  Turkish lentil soup as well. Just choose your spices.
Ginger, onion, garlic, celery, (In my case a tea spoon of curry paste and bruised lemongrass stalk) stir-fry right in the soup pot using gee or oil of your choice. Two min later add one cup of rinsed red lentils and stir-fry it all together for another min. Add two cups of chopped pumpkin and water. Bring to a boil, turn the flame to a simmer mode and leave it for an hour. I know that practically the soup will be ready in 25-30 min, but trust me on this one. You want your lentils or dals cooked longer then one hour. And it is a very good idea to include ginger in all bean related recipes. Try it, adjust the flavor with lime juice, salt, ground pepper. Always put salt in lentils and beans, etc. At the end. If curry is overpower the flavor, you can put a couple of spoons of yogurt or sour cream or even a can of coconut milk. In case of Turkish flavors add sumac and dry mint leaves. Just a pinch of each. Give it to boil for 5 more min and to rest for another 10 .

 Excellent source of Potassium, vitamins A, B6 & C, beta carotene; Iron, Magnesium, Phosphorus and Zinc.

100 calories per serving - (1 cup) 


Beet salad.

Easy to make, a pleasure to eat, and  tons of health benefits as well.
Take 2-3 medium sized  beets in their skin. (If you are buying loose beets don't forget to rinse them. If they are in a bunch cut the greens off without touching the flesh. Do not cut the tail either.  We do not want that gorgeous color to fade due to the boiling process .) Place those beets in a pot, filled with cold water. Bring them to a boil, reduse the heat to a medium, and let it sit.  Meanwhile prepare --
chopped raw garlic, chopped wallnuts and finely diced prunes.
When beets are ready(a knife will easily cut through them) and are at room tempeture, you can then remove the skin that will just slide off. A little tip: It is a very good idea to season cooked veggies while they are still warm for a better taste. Combine grated beets, garlic, walnuts, prunes, salt, freshly grined pepper, a sqeeze of lemon Juice and some sunflower seed oil. To bring it out of borders, you could use olive oil or mayo or sour creame or a combination of mayo and sour cream. And again,if you are out of an ingredient (exept for beets) don't be afraid to break the rules. Garlic  deffinately can be left out if you're taking the salad for a lunch or trying to impresse your first date.