As the last days of growing food on the porch are arriving, we harvested a bunch of young chard leaves just minutes before adding them to the pan for this delicious dish.
With just a few ingredients and minimal work that is thoroughly toddler-friendly, we arrived at dinner, next-day lunch for preschool, and family fun.
Ilian liked the pouring and stirring of lentils and spices into the pan, put his child scissors to good use during the harvest, and reeeaaallly enjoyed kneading the dough. He kept asking when dinner was ready to eat and couldn’t wait to pop one of the crunchy, fluffy lentil balls into his mouth as soon as they were cooled off a little.
We ate them just plain this time, but sometimes we mix up a yogurt-sunbutter dip. Whichever way you prefer them, enjoy!
Little Lentil Delights
- 1 cup red lentils, washed and drained
- 1 TBsp canola oil
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 tsp cumin
- 2 tsp turmeric
- 1 1/2 tsp coriander
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp marjoram
- 1/2 tsp ginger powder
- 1/4 tsp cardamom
- 2 cups chopped chard or other leafy greens, without stalks
- 4 TBsp flax meal (or 2 TBsp flax meal and 2 TBsp chia seeds)
- 1/2 cup quick oats
- 2 TBsp canola oil
- 2 cups water
- optional: 1/2 cup yogurt and 1/4 cup sunbutter, mixed, for dressing
- Heat 1 TBsp canola oil in a large pan, add lentils and spices and stir for a minute.
- Add 2 cups of water, bring to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer, cook partially covered for 10 minutes or until most water is absorbed.
- Fold in chard, keep on low heat until leaves have completely collapsed.
- Add flax meal, stir to combine well.
- Chill in fridge for 20 minutes.
- Add oats and knead dough until oats are evenly incorporated. Add more oats if the dough is too sticky. (You should be able to easily roll it into balls.)
- Preheat oven to 425F.
- Form bite-sized balls, place on baking sheet lined with parchment paper, and brush with canola oil.
- Bake for 20 minutes. Let cool until comfortable to eat. Eat!