vegan spicy lentil spread

This creamy, garlicky green lentil spread/dip is a lively alternative to hummus.  Toasting the walnuts takes nine well-worth-it minutes and adds depth of flavor.  Inspired in part by this nonvegan recipe at Food & Wine and also this one from Vegetarian Times.  Omit peanut butter and brown rice syrup if you want the cayenne and garlic to knock you over!

lentilspread

Prep Time:  30 minutes to cook lentils,+ 10 minutes to prepare.

Ingredients:
1 cup dry green lentils (2 1/2 cups cooked)
1 cup walnut halves
1 cup kale
1 cup cilantro
1/2 red onion
6 – 8 cloves garlic
1 scant T brown rice syrup
2 T olive oil
2 T peanut butter
2 T apple cider vinegar
1 t ground cumin
1 t ground cayenne
1 t salt
1 1/2 t ground ginger
1/2 t cracked black pepper

ingredlentils

Method:

Step One: Cook lentils for half an hour or till soft, in a bit less than 3 cups water. Drain cooked lentils well in a colander.

Step Two:  While lentils are cooking, toast walnut halves in a saucepan over medium heat, stirring with a wooden spoon here and there as they turn fragrant and tinged with golden brown. While toasting, gather all other ingredients and put them in the food processor.  (Be sparing with the spices at first unless you like it pretty wild!)

Step Three: Add lentils to contents of  food processor.  Close it up and whir on high setting for twenty seconds. Remove lid and scrape sides a bit, to get everything in on the whirring.

processing

Step Four: Process another 40 seconds or till creamy and hummus-textured. Adjust seasonings to taste.

That’s it! Enjoy this in wraps, sandwiches, scooped over salad greens, or as a dip for carrots or chips.

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