Pistachio Date Lentils with Watercress Humus and Fried Tofu

Rating: 
Yield: 
4 Servings
Ingredients: 

1 cup onions
3 ½ tbsp ginger
1 chili
1 cup lentils
3 ½ cups vegetable stock
6 Dates, crushed
salt and pepper
8-9 oz. canned chickpeas (drained)
1 ¾ cup watercress, chopped
3 tablespoons tahini
3 tablespoons lemon juice
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup unpeeled Californian pistachios
6 sprigs parsley
½ package tofu
2 tablespoons peanut oil
Basil for garnish

Instructions: 

1. Peel ginger and keep the juice. Grate gingerand onion; cut onions into medium dices. Clean and chop chili. Wash the lentils in a colander under running cold water and drain.
2. Heat the vegetable stock. Add the prepared ingredients; simmer about 25 minutes, until the lentils are tender.
3. Add the crushed dates to the lenses (shortly before the end of cooking); remove pan from heat. Season lentils with salt and pepper and let it stand for 10 minutes.
4. Wash the chickpeas in a colander under running cold water and drain.
5. Wash the watercress under running cold water, drain; pluck leaves from stems.. Puree chickpeas, watercress, tahini, lemon juice, olive oil and about ¼ cup warm water to form a nice smooth cream. Season with salt and pepper.
6. Remove pistachios from the shells and chop.
7. Wash the parsley under running cold water, drain and pluck the leaves off. Mix with the pistachios.
8. Cut tofu into finger-thick slices and roll in the pistachio-parsley mixture. Heat peanut oil in a pan; fry tofu slices for about one minute until each side, until golden.
9. Remove tofu from the pan and place on the plate; place the remaining pistachio-parsley mixture into the hot pan, toss. Mix in the lenses. Season with salt and pepper.
10. Arrange tofu, lentils and basil and serve.

Nutritional information per serving: 625 calories, 27 g fat, 64 g carbohydrates, 31 g E.

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fun facts

Pistachios, when eaten with high-carbohydrate foods, may result in lower than expected blood sugar levels, an important factor in reducing risk of diabetes.

According to a Penn State University study, it is suggested that pistachios reduce the body's biological response to stress.

One serving of pistachios has as much potassium (300mg, 8%) as an orange (250mg, 7%).

Pistachios are high in phytosterols which may lower cholesterol levels and decrease the risk of heart disease. In animal studies phytosterols have been shown to potentially have anti-cancer properties.

One serving of pistachios is 49 nuts, more than any other tree nut.

Forty-nine pistachios serve up to 20 percent of your Daily Value of B6, about the same as half an avocado.

You can obtain more dietary fiber from a serving of pistachios (3g) than a 1/2 cup of cooked broccoli, and the same amount of dietary fiber as an orange or an apple — approximately 10 percent of the Daily Value.

Just a single serving of pistachios provides you with the same amount of protein in a one-ounce serving of soybeans and can serve as a protein alternative to meat, poultry or beans according to the USDA Food Guide Pyramid.

Pistachios are a naturally cholesterol-free snack and contain just 1.5 grams of saturated fat.

Celebrate the greatness of nuts! October 22 is National Nut Day and February 26 is National Pistachio Day!