For me, February is the hardest time if year to commit to eating clean. It is a low point for fresh fruits and veggies, and the bitterly cold Canadian winter makes me want to stay inside and order take-out. One of the best ways we have found to power through the February blahs is by whipping up a recipe that reminds us of the deliciously hot and spicy summer dishes to come, while also packing a nutritious punch to help stave off the inevitable seasonal colds.
This vegan fajita recipe has a blend of spices that brings to mind patios and margaritas, transporting us from the frigidly miserable winter weather to the long-awaited joy of summer, if only for the length of your dinner! And being generous with the chili flakes will only help you stay warm! Together the lentils, walnuts and TVP pack an amazing amount of protein for a vegan option. We are certain this recipe could easily be enjoyed in the heat of summer, and maybe the calories you save during this healthy meal can go toward another margarita!
2/3 cup green lentils, uncooked
1 and 2/3 cups water
2/3 cup toasted walnuts
1 cup TVP
1 cup boiling water
2 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 tsp cayenne
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp onion powder
1 and 1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp parsley flakes
Salt,pepper, chili flakes to taste
1 yellow pepper, sliced
4-6 cremini mushrooms, sliced
1/2 yellow onion, sliced
2 green onions, sliced
4-6 Radicchio leaves, washed and pat dry
4-6 romaine lettuce leaves, washed and pat dry
In a pot, add lentils to 1 and 2/3 cups of water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and let simmer for 20 minutes until lentils are soft. Drain off excess water and allow to cool. In a food processor, process lentils and toasted walnuts until a ground beef-like texture is achieved (we use the pulse setting for this). Set mixture aside.
Time to create our “meat” mixture! In a medium frying pan over medium heat, re-hydrate TVP by mixing with 1 cup of boiling water. Add 1 Tbsp olive oil and all spices. Cook until TVP starts to brown a bit. Mix in walnut and lentil mixture, mixing well and allowing mixture to brown a bit more until similar to ground beef in texture.
Saute onion, pepper, and mushrooms in a pan until soft. Assemble fajitas by layering “meat” and sauteed veggies in radicchio and romaine boats. Garnish with green onion. We also added a touch of salsa and grated cheese (but hold off on the cheese to stay vegan!). Serve and enjoy!