Appetizers, Petit Bites, Salads, Sides, Vegetables

Carrot Salad with Mint and Granny Smith Apples

carrot salad

Ingredients (for 2-3 servings):

  • 3 carrots, grated
  • 1 granny smith apple, diced
  • 3-4 tbsp chopped fresh mint
  • 1/2 cup mayo
  • 2-3 tbsp milk
  • 1/4 tsp ground cumin
  • salt
  • handful of roasted pepitas (optional)


  1. Thin the mayo with milk and stir in cumin.
  2. Mix carrots, apple, mint (and pepitas) in a bowl with the mayo mixture.
  3. Add salt to taste.
Mains, Sides, Vegetables

French Green Lentils with Eggplant and Yogurt


I made this as a vegetarian main dish for a dinner party.  It turned out to be a great side dish as well for spicy pork stew.  Either way, serve this with steamed rice.


  • 2-3 cups French green lentils
  • chicken broth (optional)
  • water
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 2 shallots, finely chopped
  • 1 bunch parsley, chopped
  • 1/2 bunch dill, chopped
  • 6-8 Eggplants
  • 2 tbsp white wine vinegar
  • olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • plain yogurt


  1. Soak lentils in warm water and 2 tsp salt for an hour. Drain and rinse.   Add lentils, chicken broth, water, 2 tsp salt, bay leaves, and garlic cloves to a stock pot with a lid.  Bake in 325 degree oven for 60 minutes (or simmer on stove), until lentils aren’t crunchy in the middle. Drain lentils. Discard garlic and bay leaves.
  2. Toss warm lentils with shallots (to soften them).  Add chopped herbs and tomato.  Drizzle olive oil.  Salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Pierce the eggplant multiple times with a knife and bake on cookie  sheet at 450 degrees for an hour, until the center is soft.  Slice vertically and scoop out the eggplant flesh into a strainer. Strain for 10 minutes.  Transfer eggplant to a bowl and mix with vinegar and salt.
  4. To serve, place lentils in a shallow bowl, top with eggplant in the center, top the eggplant with yogurt OR serve yogurt on the side (which is what I did).

You can add finely chopped carrots to make the lentil salad more hearty. Squeeze lime over it all for brightness.


diet dishes, Salads, Sides, Vegetables

Mung Bean Salad

Cook mung beans (boil in water for 30-40 minutes).  drain.

Toss with: chopped green onions, thinly sliced green cabbage.

Drizzle with: lemon juice, olive oil, salt, pepper.


  1. sub mung beans for french green lentils
  2. sub flat-leaf parsley and red onion for green onions
  3. add chopped cabbage, matchstick carrots, matchstick red bell pepper
  4. add ground cumin

Eat with  roasted chicken and Moroccan Roasted Cauliflower.

Mains, Vegetables

frugal vegetarian dinner: Rice, Lentils, Onions, Tomato Sauce


  • 1 cup brown lentils
  • ~2 cups basmati rice
  • chicken bouillon
  • cumin
  • 3 onions, chopped
  • ketchup
  • srirracha
  • olive oil
  • canola oil
  • salt/pepper


  1. Cover lentils in water so that they are covered by 1/2 inch of water. Add chicken bouillon cube and 1 tbsp cumin.  Bring to a boil and simmer for 10-15 minutes.
  2. Add rice and more water to cover the mix by 1/4 – 1/2 inch water.  Cover and simmer on low heat for 15-20 minutes (or until done).
  3. In a skillet, saute the onions in canola oil until they are brown, about 15 minutes.
  4. In a saucepan, fry up some ketchup in olive oil. Add srirracha, 1 tsp cumin, and salt to taste.  Fry it for at least 5 minutes.
  5. To serve: top rice with onions, add tomato sauce to the side.  Salt/pepper to taste.

You can also serve this with a side of plain macaroni and/or green salad.  It’s a lunch thing.  Also, most people use plain yogurt instead of tomato sauce.

diet dishes, Sides, Vegetables

Moroccan Roasted Cauliflower

This is a bomb side dish.  Plus, cruciferous veggies prevent cancer and are a good source of sulfur.


  • cauliflower, chop into 1/2 inch flat pieces
  • 3-6 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1-2 tbsp hot red pepper powder (or red chili flakes, paprika)
  • 1-2 tbsp ground cumin
  • 1 tbsp thyme
  • olive oil
  • salt & pepper


  1. Toss the cauliflower and garlic in olive oil.
  2. Arrange the garlic/cauliflower on a baking sheet so that the pieces lie flat and sprinkle with spices and salt.  I try to get everything well dusted with cumin and chili powder.
  3. Roast in oven at 425 for 30 minutes.