Recipe: Vegetable Marinara Pasta Bake with Popped Amaranth Top Crust

I don’t know that I’ve ever really declared this here on my blog, but I’m pretty much a geek in a lot of ways.

Ready to go in the oven

I’m a running geek who eagerly awaits her issues of Runner’s World and Running Times each month – then immersing myself in training methods, splits, and gear.

I’m a pop culture geek who can spend days philosophizing about the socially important messages and critiques in a single episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and who counts the regeneration of The Doctor as a significant stressor in her life.

I’m a HUGE literary geek.  Tired of being around me?  Just shove me in a bookstore or library and I’ll be entirely happy on my own until I realize I haven’t eaten in days.

And, of course, I’m a kitchen geek.  I get excited about kitchen gadgets and culinary ephemera.  An orderly mise en place sets my world on fire and learning a new cooking technique is an exciting adventure.

Noodles and Veggies

So when I learned about how amaranth (a nutritious, tasty, and gluten free grain that I can safely eat!) can be popped like popcorn on the stovetop, I KNEW it was something I had to try.  I got excited about this.  Like REALLY excited.

My excitement only grew throughout the process of popping the amaranth and making this dish.  I ended up with amaranth all over my kitchen because I got a little over excited and didn’t cover it well at first, but it was worth it.  This was fun and totally delighted my inner-culinary geek who marveled at watching this mighty little grain go!

If you’re hesitant to try this technique or just don’t have access to amaranth, you can certainly make this dish with a traditional breadcrumb topping or no topping at all.  But, if you’re feeling adventurous – find some amaranth and get ready to have some fun in your kitchen – just keep a broom handy for the errant traveling seeds you’ll find later!


**Note: As is the case with so many meals, feel free to customize this dish with your favorite vegetables or what you have on hand.  I like this combination of mushrooms, onion, pepper, and spinach for the complimentary mix of tastes, colors, and nutritional benefits, but you could certainly swap other veggies to suit your needs.


Vegetable Marinara Bake with Popped Amaranth Top Crust

A Move Eat Create Original Recipe  Olive oil

Serves 8


  • 16 oz gluten free penne (or pasta of choice)
  • ¼ cup amaranth
  • 3 tblspns vegan Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tblspn chopped fresh basil
  • 1 ½ tblspn olive oil, divided
  • ½ yellow onion, diced
  • 2 large cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 ½ cup chopped cremini mushrooms
  • ¼ tspn ground fennel
  • ½ tspn crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 tblspn nutritional yeast
  • 2 cups baby spinach leaves, chopped
  • 25-26 oz jar of marinara sauce (or equivalent of homemade)
  • Salt and pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and prepare an 11 x 7 baking pan by coating with cooking spray.
  2. Cook pasta noodles to just al dente, according to package directions.  Drain and set aside.
  3. Prepare the ingredients that will be the topping for the pasta bake.  To pop the amaranth, warm a dry pan over medium-high heat on the stovetop.  When heated, add 1 tablespoon of amaranth at a time to the pan.  If you have one, cover with a splatter screen.  The amaranth will begin to pop like popcorn.  Agitate the amaranth in the pan until most has popped.  Transfer popped amaranth to a bowl and repeat until all amaranth has been popped.  Be especially careful, as the amaranth can burn if it is not kept almost constantly agitated by shaking the pan or stirring.  The amaranth will pop quickly.  Once all amaranth has been popped, add vegan Parmesan, chopped basil, and 1 tablespoon of the olive oil to it and mix well to combine and coat ingredients with the olive oil.  Set aside.
  4. Heat remaining ½ tablespoon oil in a sauté pan over medium heat.  Add onion, garlic, and pepper, along with a pinch of salt, and sauté for about 5 minutes, until vegetables are softened.
  5. Add chopped mushrooms and cook another 3-4 minutes.
  6. Add fennel, red pepper flakes, nutritional yeast, and chopped spinach to pan.  Mix well and cook just 1-2 minutes until spinach starts to wilt.  Turn off heat and add cooked pasta noodles to the pan, stirring well to combine all ingredients.
  7. Line bottom of prepared baking pan with a light layer of the marinara sauce.  Pour noodles and vegetables on top of sauce and spread evenly.  Pour remaining marinara sauce onto top of noodle/vegetable mixture evenly.  Finally, sprinkle prepared topping across the entire casserole.
  8. Cover with foil and bake for 15 minutes at 350 degree.  Uncover and continue to bake for 10 more minutes.  Serve with additional salt, pepper, and vegan Parmesan to taste.

Foodie Firsts: Meyer Lemons (Plus, A Recipe: Meyer Lemon Linguini with Kale Raab and Cherry Tomatoes)

wooden spoons-001

Foodie Firsts is a Move Eat Create weekly feature focusing on my adventures in the world of food.  Over the course of a few short years, I have transformed from a picky, fearful eater to a curious and open-minded foodie.  In a commitment to continue to expand my culinary experiences, I have started Foodie Firsts.  Each week I will commit to trying something new and sharing that experience with you.  My endeavors may include experimenting with cooking techniques I’ve never tried before, testing a single new ingredient, or drawing upon my creativity to combine foods in ways I never imagined.  Whatever it is, I will eat (or maybe drink) it and share it all with you.  You can decide for yourself whether you, too, would like to try.  Let’s be bold and eat good food!


Meyer lemons are one of those foods that people have very strong opinions about.  They almost have a cult-like following.  Devotees talk animatedly about their return each season, preserve what they can for the dark days when fresh ones are not available, and fill their lives with Meyer lemon goodness when the season is right.  If food were science-fiction, you might say that Meyer lemons are the Doctor Who of the food world.  (Or maybe, I’m just excited about Doctor Who right now and it’s infiltrating my other life spaces.)

Whole Close Up - edited

As you might have guessed given the focus of this column, I had never had a Meyer lemon.  So when people started blogging excitedly about them or expressing joy in the supermarket at their return, I just wasn’t getting it.  What was all the fuss?   Could they really be that much different from a ‘regular’ lemon??

Let me say that I am a BIG FAN of lemons.  I happen to believe that they are one of the most endlessly useful items to have in a kitchen.  Their zest and juice can transform baked goods to a whole other level of awesomeness, add zingy interest to soups, brighten up pasta in a flash, elevate salad from dull to exciting, and, heck, a slice in a glass of water (or, ahem, gin) can go a long way to increasing taste and experience.

Lemons are good stuff.

So, I had to ask, was a Meyer lemon going to be much different?  And, if in fact it was that different, was that going to actually be a good thing?

Meyer Lemon Collage

I think I can say that it WAS THAT different.  I decided to try Meyer lemons two ways – sweet and savory.  Plus, I just sampled a bit of the juice itself.  The difference, of course, starts right from the get-go with the visual aspect of the fruit.  It’s lemon-shaped and lemon-sized, but the color is not the same.  Less bright and catchy, the Meyer lemons I purchased had a flatter hue.  When I placed them side by side on my counter with a standard lemon, there was no confusing which was which.

Tasting the Meyer lemon juice on its own, it was clear that the taste is definitely a different experience from standard lemons.  I could tell it wasn’t as sharp or acidic and I was curious to see how this would impact my food.  I had 6 lemons and decided I would put 3 to work in a savory dish (pasta) and 3 would be used in a sweet dish (lemon bars).

I’ll start with the bad (because the good was REALLY good).  The lemon bars didn’t quite come out right.  To be fair, I don’t think it was entirely the fault of the Meyer lemons themselves.  The recipe I used just didn’t work quite right for some reason and I needed to have baked them longer, I think, as they didn’t set up quite right.  So, there were some serious fundamental flaws.  What I will say is that regardless of these issues, if you want a traditional lemon bar, with loads of wake-up-and-stimulate-your-senses sharp flavors, Meyer lemons aren’t going to do that for you.  If you want a smoother, more subtle, and possibly more sweet lemon bar, than the Meyers just might work.

Plated 5 - edited

Moving on to the good.  I made pasta.  Meyer lemon linguini with cherry tomatoes and kale raab to be specific about it, and it was tremendously satisfying.  Maybe I was just having a good night in the kitchen, but the Meyers really worked with this dish.  That lack of bold lemon punch was a really good thing in this case, as the Meyer lemons actually added a rounder, more full-bodied flavor to the dish, rather than just a zap of acid and tartness.  I would venture to say that they added a richness to this dish that a standard lemon just would not have done and it elevated the flavor to something a bit more complex.  This dish made me excited about Meyer lemons the way I have seen others be.

What about all of you?  Are you a Meyer lemon convert?  Do you get excited when their time rolls around each year?

Notes & Final Thoughts:

Lessons Learned:  As I said, I really love lemons.  I can’t say that Meyer lemons have won over my heart from their more common counterparts quite yet.  I certainly don’t think they have the versatility of their lemon cousins.  I was really excited about the pasta dish though and, in that context, totally understand how they could be used differently, uniquely, to make a dish their own.  That gives me enough incentive to want to experiment with them further.

Serving Suggestions:  Well, the pasta below, of course.  But also, I’ve seen a variety of recipes for Meyer lemon muffins and bread.  I am pretty much always in favor of a good muffin or bread, so those seem like an excellent thing to try.  Also, probably one of the most popular things to do is snag some while they’re in season and preserve them for later use.

Lessons Learned: I was struck by how it really is quite possible for two items to be so closely related to one another and yet be so very unique in the outcomes they produce.  It has caused me to give more consideration to the subtle differences between similar food items and how they will impact a dish.  It is fun to notice how my own palate is becoming more discerning as I continue to try new things with an open mind and attention to subtle details!


Meyer Lemon Linguini with Kale Raab & Cherry Tomatoes

Serves 4

Ingredients:In Pan 2 - edited

  • 8 oz linguini (I used spinach linguini)
  • 2 small batches kale raab, stems discarded, leaves and flowers chopped
  • 3 tblspns water
  • 1 tblspn olive oil
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tspn red pepper flakes
  • Juice of 3 medium Meyer lemons
  • 1 tspn kosher salt
  • ½ tspn black pepper
  • 1 tblspn fresh thyme, minced
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese (vegan or dairy, per preference)
  • Handful of Italian parsley, chopped


  1. Prepare noodles according to package directions.  Drain and set aside.
  2. Warm sauté pan over medium heat.  Add chopped kale raab, along with 3 tblspns water.  Cover immediately and let steam in pan for 2-3 minutes.  Remove steamed kale raab from pan and set aside.
  3. Return sauté pan to stovetop, over medium heat.  Add oil.  Once warmed add garlic and red pepper flakes.  Cook, stirring frequently for 1-2 minutes, or until garlic begins to lightly brown.
  4. Add steamed kale raab, lemon juice, salt, pepper, and thyme to pan.  Stir to combine all ingredients well and cook for 1-2 minutes.
  5. Add cooked noodles and cherry tomatoes to pan and toss all ingredients together.  Cook 2-3 more minutes until all components are heated and combined.
  6. Remove from heat and add Parmesan, tossing to coat other ingredients.  Serve with fresh Italian parsley garnish.

My Hoarded Life + A Recipe: Vegetarian Lasagna Soup

I have a problem.  I hoard recipes.  Recipes in cookbooks, recipes online, recipes from magazines, recipes snapped with my camera phone – it doesn’t matter.  If I see it and it sounds remotely good, I’m getting it for myself.

This becomes a problem because: A) I do not, in any way, have even remotely enough time to make all of the recipes that I stash; B) I keep stashing more of them anyway; and C) I don’t have the time or energy to organize them into any meaningful system.

As a result I have folders of recipes that I once tried to organize on my computer, random bookmarked recipes that scroll on and on for days also on my computer, hundreds of emails from myself with links to recipes that I’ve found while reading blogs or articles on my iPhone, binders full of photo-copied recipes that I get from library-borrowed cookbooks, a basket stacked full of magazines with dog-eared pages where tasty recipes live, a bookshelf of my owned cookbooks in my dining area, and random scribbled notes and recipes that I’ve printed and written notes on tucked away into various corners of my life.

It’s mad.

It’s really, truly mad.

I need a system and a professional organizer, but it’s not likely to happen soon.  The funny thing is that many recipes are for the same or similar item, but I like to look at slightly different methods and then alter things from various sources to fit my needs and preferences.  So, instead of one cinnamon coffee cake recipe, I have like, oh, maybe 26.

Sometimes, I know I want to make something but I’m so overwhelmed with options, that I simply go with something I’ve just recently seen.  It’s easy to find because it’s at the top of the pile or the bottom of a list somewhere and that can make all the difference in the world when it comes to influencing my cooking decisions.  And sometimes when I do this, I strike recipe gold.

Lasagna Soup - Edited

Such is the case with this recipe here.  I’m not going to type it all out for you because this is one recipe that I followed exactly.  Okay, I added more garlic, but I always add more garlic.  Besides that, I changed nothing.  I’ve made this a couple of times now and just totally love it.  It is one of the single most delicious and satisfying meals I’ve eaten.  I will eat this all year, in any season, because it’s so wonderful, but I wanted to be sure to share the recipe before the last winter days slipped away.  There is something about a bowl of this soup on a cold, dark evening that is utterly magical.

By the way, if you haven’t ever checked out Joanne’s blog (where this recipe hails from), Eats Well With Others, I highly recommend spending some time poking around there.  It’s wonderful – one of my most trusted for quality recipes, for sure – but also just a consistently great read.

Here you are (click through for link to recipe):  Lasagna Soup as found on Eats Well With Others (plus some extra garlic).

Recipe: “Just Going For It” Vegan Macaroni and Cheese

I love it when I have it in me to just go for it.  I’m a planner and a worrier, so just going for it isn’t something that necessarily comes easily to me, but when I do it, it’s pretty fantastic.

That hill that looks too big to conquer?  I’ll just feel all that much more bad-ass when I run to the top!

That panicky anxiety about speaking in front of a room full of people?  I can get over it – I know how to win them over!

That bridge that drudges up massive fear and images of falling to my drowny-death in a watery, dark abyss??  I gotta’ get over the river and to work somehow! (Wait, I don’t think I’ve told you all about my massive fear of water, but now you know.)

Vegan Mac and Cheese

It’s so easy to back off, slow down, develop other plans, or just give up entirely when uncertainty strikes.  Sometimes, it’s even wise to do so.  But, other times, it’s absolutely wise to just forge ahead.

I’m trying to push myself to forge ahead more often.

This dish is a result of me forging.  Cooking may not seem that daunting, but there are certain dishes that intimidate me and certain days when my confidence with a wooden spoon, pot, and stove top is nowhere to be found.  Veganizing macaroni and cheese was a bit of an intimidating process to me, but I forged on with a bag full of nutritional yeast and a bad-ass cooking mentality, merging researched recipes and adding my own flavors on instinct.

It was so worth it.

This is a new favorite.  As I ate it, I kept verbally expressing my delight (and surprise) at how incredibly delicious and satisfying it was.  I’m making this again.  Often.

How about a cheer for just going for it??


“Just Going For It” Vegan Macaroni and Cheese

Makes 6-8 Servings

Adapted from Robin Robertson’s Vegan on the Cheap and Chloe Coscarelli’s Chloe’s Kitchen


Ingredients: Vegan Mac and Cheese - Single Serving 2

  • 16 oz elbow macaroni or shells
  • 3 tblspns Earth Balance (or other vegan margarine)
  • 1/3 cup white whole wheat flour (or AP flour)
  • 3 cups non-dairy milk (I used unsweetened almond, but soy, rice, or hemp would work)
  • ½ cup nutritional yeast
  • 2 tblspns tomato paste
  • 2 tspns kosher salt, plus more for cooking the pasta
  • 1 tspn garlic powder
  • ½ tspn onion powder
  • ¼ tspn cayenne pepper
  • ¼ tspn turmeric
  • ¼ tspn black pepper
  • 1 tblpn lemon juice
  • ½ tblpn apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tblpns bread crumbs, seasoned with a pinch of cayenne and garlic powder
  • Optional toppings for serving: hot sauce, chopped green onions or chives, slices of tomatoes


  1. Prepare your breadcrumbs by mixing them in a bowl with a pinch of cayenne and garlic powder.  Set aside.
  2. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.  Coat a 9×13 baking pan with cooking spray.
  3. Cook your pasta in salted water according to package directions.  Drain and set aside.
  4. In a medium saucepan, combine Earth Balance and flour over medium heat.  Using a fork or small whisk, stir constantly until Earth Balance has melted and has formed a thick paste with the flour.
  5. Add non-dairy milk, nutritional yeast, tomato paste, salt, garlic powder, onion powder, cayenne, turmeric, and black pepper to the saucepan.  Bring the mixture just up to a boil and then reduce heat to low and simmer until the sauce thickens – about 10 minutes.  Whisk mixture frequently during the cooking process.
  6. Remove from heat.  Add in lemon juice and apple cider vinegar.  Stir well.  Combine cooked noodles and sauce in a large bowl (or the pot you used to cook the noodles) and mix well.  Pour into prepared pan and distribute evenly.
  7. Sprinkle seasoned bread crumbs across the top of the pasta and bake for 25-30 minutes, uncovered, or until the top is lightly browned.
  8. Let rest for a few minutes before serving with toppings of your choice. Recommended toppings include hot sauce, tomato slices, and/or chopped green onions or chives.


A Favorite Soothing Recipe: Slow Cooked Cabbage with Paprika and Noodles

You know those weeks that just wear you down?  Those weeks where by Friday at 2pm, you’re kinda’ cranky, sorta’ grumbly, and hella’ worn out?

Yeah, me, too.

cabbage on plate - 2 - edited

They happen.  They’re part of life and that’s okay.  When they come around, I can tell you that one of my favorite and most effective ways of dealing with them is to make this dish.  But, I must make this dish in a particular way.  It goes something like this:

Step 1: Crank up some music.  I recommend music that is easy to dance around to in the kitchen and can be sung along with.  My favorites for this scenario are: Amanda Palmer and Caro Emerald.  I dump the albums into a playlist on my computer, turn on shuffle, and click play.  Out from my speakers then comes big, strong female vocals with stellar music and lyrics.  I also recommend vintage rat-pack era playlists on Songza (Sinatra and his buddies) for this purpose.

Step 2:  Pour yourself a glass of wine.  I almost exclusively drink red and prefer Bordeaux and Cotes du Rhone (in case you feel like sending me a bottle!).

Step 3.  Gather ingredients for below meal and begin chopping.

cabbage cooking - 1 - edited

Step 4:  Follow cooking instructions below, while taking plenty of time to swirl your glass of wine, sip at it frequently, shimmy around the kitchen, and burst into song with whatever verses most compel you to release your inner vocalist.

Step 5:  Lower music and gather around to eat finished meal with company of your choice.  Let the comforting, warm flavors continue to help you unwind and welcome the weekend.


Slow Cooked Cabbage with Paprika and Noodles

Adapted from The Local Cook

Serves 6

Ingredients: cabbage bowl - 3 - edited

* 4 tblpns light butter or Earth Balance

* 1 large yellow onion, diced

* 2-3 tblspns Hungarian paprika

* 1 large head of green cabbage, shredded

* heavy sprinking of kosher salt, to taste

* 12 ounces of no-yolk egg noodles (or vegan noodle of your choice)

* 3/4 cup frozen green peas

* black pepper and/or red pepper flakes for serving


1.  In a dutch oven (preferable) or large pot, melt butter or Earth balance over medium heat

2. Add the diced onion and saute until very soft, about 10 minutes or so.  Take your time with this and let the onion really cook slowly.

3. Add 2 tblspns paprika and stir well, so that the onions are coated.

4. Add shredded cabbage and a good couple pinches of salt.  Stir well until the cabbage, onions, and paprika are well mixed.  Take a look at this point, if your cabbage is not well coated with paprika, add up to one tablespoon more until it is.

5. Cover pot, reduce heat to low and cook slowly for 60-75 minutes, stirring occasionally, until cabbage is cooked very soft.

6. When the cabbage is nearly done, go ahead and cook your noodles according to package directions.  Drain and set aside.

7. Add peas and cooked noodles to the cabbage and stir to incorporate.  Cook 3-4 minutes, until all items are heated through. (Note: If you have an anti-pea person in your home, you can heat up the peas separately and add them to individual servings.)

8. Serve with pepper of your choice for a bit of kick to contrast the sweetness of the paprika.

Recipe: Pasta with Spicy Greek-Inspired Tomato Sauce

There is a very fundamental truth about me that you all should know.  I love pasta.  I mean LOVE pasta.  Sit me down with a bowl of noodles and some variation of a red sauce in front of me and contentment will invariably kick in.

There are, in fact, only a few foods that really test my limits of portion control.  These are the foods that I have to carefully dish out a proper portion, sit down, and NOT GO BACK for more or I may never stop eating; because no matter how full I am, I will keep plowing on with my fork until these foods are all gone:  pasta, mashed potatoes, donuts.

My vices are all white, starchy carbohydrates.

I suppose there could be worse things.

Greek Pasta 3

The truth is that when it comes to pasta, mashed potatoes and donuts, they don’t even have to be very good.  If not careful, I will eat them all regardless of their mediocrity and then complain later that they weren’t very good.

Lucky for me I have (mostly) developed a wise and sensible ability to eat a reasonably-sized portion and then WALK AWAY.

Also lucky for me (and for you if you like to cook), I don’t have to settle for finding comfort in mediocre pasta, because I can make this pasta.  This pasta is far better then mediocre.

This pasta, in fact, is a tasty twist on a standard tomato sauce, as it veers a bit more toward Greece, rather than Italy, and has a nice kick of spice from a healthy shake of red pepper flakes.

This is definitely a pasta dish that tests my powers of portion control.  But, the up-side of that is that there is then leftover pasta for my lunch the next day.  Yum.


Pasta with Spicy Greek Inspired Tomato Sauce

Inspired by a variety of recipes I have seen floating on the Internet at random times!


1 lb noodles of your choice (I used Golden Grain Jumbo Elbows, which were great.)   Golden Grain Pasta

1 tblspn extra-virgin olive oil

2 large leeks, rinsed well and chopped fine

1 small red bell pepper, diced

5 cloves garlic, minced

½ tspn ground fennel

28 oz can crushed tomatoes

1/3 cup kalamata olives, chopped

1 tspn dried oregano

1 tspn crushed red pepper flakes

½ – 1 tspn salt (to taste)

1 tblspn red wine vinegar

Feta cheese (I used regular feta, but you can omit this or sub a vegan cheese if preferred), for serving


  1. Bring a pot of salted water to a boil and cook your pasta as directed.  Drain and set aside when done.
  2. Meanwhile, pour oil into a large sauté pan and warm up over medium heat.  Add leeks, bell pepper, garlic and fennel to the pan.  Cook, stirring frequently for approximately 15 minutes, or until the vegetables are softened.
  3. Add tomatoes (with juices), olives, oregano, red pepper flakes, salt, and red wine vinegar to the leek mixture.  Stir all ingredients well to combine and then simmer for approximately 10 minutes.
  4. Add cooked noodles to the tomato sauce, stir to coat noodles over low heat.
  5. Serve with feta to be added to individual servings.

Recipe: Koshari (Pre-Race Dinner and One of My Favorite Meals)

In the weeks leading up to my first half-marathon, I spent quite a bit of time reading and planning for how I would prepare.  What would my taper look like?  Should I have a pre-race meal 2 hours or 3 hours beforehand?  And, of course, there was the question of what to eat the night before the race.

Since I wasn’t running a full marathon, heavy carbo-loading wasn’t necessary, but I did want to increase my carbohydrate intake somewhat in the days leading up to the run, just to be sure I had the stored energy that I would need.  I also wanted to eat something familiar and delicious; something that I knew would provide me with necessary nutrients, as well as comfort to calm some of my nerves.

It didn’t take long for me to decide on koshari as my pre-race dinner.  Many runners turn to pasta dishes before runs.  Whether it’s a group of runners gathering together or a quick meal at home, pasta dinners have long been a tradition before races.  Koshari is a take on a pasta dinner, but with a decidedly different cultural twist.

As I understand it, koshari is Egyptian in origin and is a traditional mixture of pasta, lentils, and rice with a somewhat spicy tomato sauce and onions.  I’ve seen several different recipes for koshari and the one I will share with you here is the one I have created from a culmination of various sources and my own trial and error.

This is a simple dish, but it is consistently one of my favorite and most satisfying meals.  I also like to think that it really is ideal to include in a healthy menu for runners and other athletes, as it packs a nice combination of nutrients.  The pasta and rice give you the carbohydrates you need for sustaining energy levels.  The lentils provide a substantial dose of protein, fiber and B vitamins.  The tomato sauce delivers powerful antioxidants and a good amount of potassium, and the onions provide protection for your heart, as well as overall anti-inflammatory properties.  How perfect is that??

Plus, this stuff is good.



Serves 6-8


  • 1 cup dried lentils, rinsed and picked through
  • 1 cup rice
  • 1 cup dried small pasta (macaroni/orzo/elbows)
  • 1 large white or yellow onion, diced
  • 2 tblspns olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2.5 cups tomato sauce
  • ¼ tspn red pepper flakes
  • 1 green chili, diced
  • 1 tblspn red wine vinegar
  • (optional: extra onion to fry and top with cooked koshari)


  1. Place lentils in a pot with 3 cups of water.  Bring to a boil, cover and simmer about 30-40 minutes, until tender.  Drain and set aside.
  2. Simultaneously, cook rice in 2 cups of water as directed on package. When finished, set aside.
  3. Also, cook pasta until al dente.  Drain and set aside.
  4. Saute onions, garlic and chili in olive oil until browned.
  5. Add tomato sauce, red pepper flakes, and red wine vinegar.  Heat to boiling and reduce to a simmer.  Add salt and additional red pepper flakes to preferred taste.  Simmer for 3-4 minutes.
  6. Combine cooked lentils, rice and pasta with the sauce and mix to combine.  If desired, serve topped with caramelized onions, chopped parsley or cilantro.