This recipe, One Pot Vegan Pilaf, couldn’t be easier. Just chop, than throw everything in a pot, pour in some vegetable stock and spices and there you are: food ready – tasty, healthy, vegan, full of vegetables, spices and energy. The only thing you have to do in between is to stir from time to time, otherwise there is absolutely no effort or anything else involved.
I first cooked this years ago and I keep cooking it from time to time, when I just need something healthy and simple. You can throw in just about any veggies you like or have laying around, it is a good way to use up the odd celery stick and carrot wilting away in your fridge or the one handful of peas or green beans in your freezer.
And as most people do have some rice, lentils and spices in their pantries, there will probably be no need for you to go shopping anyway. That is for me a good incentive to cook a recipe. I tend to buy too much food and when I go to a supermarket and need only one or two things, I still end up wasting at least 20 euros. That is really annoying, so I prefer making a cooking and shopping list on Sundays, only go shopping about twice a week and avoid the shops thoroughly otherwise. It doesn’t always work, but at least I’m trying.
If you use red lentils, which cook quicker than other sorts of lentils, they will disintegrate and will make the whole pot really nice and creamy. You will definitely taste them but you won’t really be able to see them anymore. If you prefer your lentils to still have a bite, than use another sort: black, green, brown.
I prefer to eat this right away before the rice absorbs all the stock but if you have leftovers (which I usually do), you can heat this up and add some more stock as you do. You might need to adjust the taste again as well with some salt, pepper and the spices you used before.
- 1 cup brown rice
- ½ cup lentils
- 1 large onion
- 3 garlic cloves
- 1 or 2 chilies, to taste
- fresh ginger to taste
- 2 medium carrots
- 2 celery sticks
- 1 large red bell pepper
- 2 handful mushrooms of choice
- vegetable stock to fill ¾ of the pot
- ½ teaspoon turmeric
- 1-2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon garam masala or 1 teaspoon of your favorite curry powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- You can variate the vegetables and use aubergines, cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, peas, green beans etc for a change.
- Take a large pot. Put the washed and drained rice and lentils into it. Chop all the vegetables and throw them in the pot. Add the spices on top and fill with vegetable stock, about ¾ of the pan. Stir well, cover, bring to a boil, lower the heat and simmer for about 45 minutes, stirring from time to time. I prefer this dish a bit soupy, so you might want to add some more vegetable stock while cooking if the thing appears to be too dry.
- Check to see if the rice and lentils are cooked and check the seasoning as well. You might want to add more spices and salt.
- Enjoy and if you don't care about eating vegan, you can add a nice dollop of Greek yogurt on top. Some grated garlic + salt and pepper added to the yogurt will only make things better.