About a week ago, I ate lunch at the Bennington College dining hall in Vermont. The vegetarian hot lunch choice that day was coconut lentils. I like coconut, and I like lentils, and I preferred to have a vegetarian lunch, so I took a small portion. I did not expect to like it very much, as it looked a bit bland and mushy. Hence the small portion. I found it, however, mouth-wateringly delicious, and I went back for seconds. I thought about it several times this week, so I decided to take a stab at it for tonight's dinner. I did not know exactly what was in the dish I had last week. I only knew it had coconut, lentils and carrots. But I followed my intuition and came up with something that, while not exactly like what I ate at Bennington, was very delicious. I had (I am blushing now) four helpings this evening. I found the taste to be addictive and kept wanting more! I really, really enjoyed this combination of flavors. I hope you do, too!
2 TBS coconut oil
1 onion, chopped
2 carrots, diced
1 cup red lentils
1 can coconut milk
2 cups water
½ tsp garam masala (an Indian spice blend. If you cannot find it, substitute curry powder.)
1/3 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
½ tsp coarse sea salt
Saute chopped onion in coconut oil. Cook until onions are translucent. Add carrots, stir and cook for a few more minutes. Add coconut milk, water, coconut flakes, rinsed lentils, and garam masala. Bring to a simmer and cook, covered, for about 15 minutes. Add salt and continue cooking over low heat, stirring occasionally, until lentils are tender. Serve over brown rice.