Ironically, ground beef can be local while lentils are not, but the health and environmental benefits of the mighty lentil make a certain amount of experimentation worthwhile. So I have begun a quest to try out lentils in place of ground beef in a variety of recipes. (Don’t worry, no hamburgers will be replaced by lentils in this experiment).
First up is the taco. Inspired by 49 cent taco seasoning at the Food Lion, I reheated some previously frozen lentils (I cooked a lot of lentils the other weekend!) and added the taco seasoning. It tasted reasonably close to taco meat and under copious amounts of toppings who would know the difference? Actually, one person – the house vegetarian, who liked it a lot.
We substituted cucumbers for the lettuce as we had no lettuce and three cucumbers were left from the weekly produce box. This was a nice addition and sparked thoughts of Tzatziki sauce – with some tweaking of the spices, we could go in a new direction!
Anyway, this taco version wasn’t particularly local or homemade, but there is no reason it couldn’t be next time around! The general verdict was that we should have lentil tacos often (and skip the beef…).
Cooked Lentils (enough to approximate 1 lb of beef)
Taco seasoning (little package or make your own…I’ll investigate recipes or take suggestions)
Tortillas (purchased or make your own…the recipe I use is in the link)
Toppings of your choice: cheese, sour cream, tomatoes, random seasonal veggies, salsa etc.
Heat the lentils and add the seasonings. Layer the lentils and toppings on the tortilla, fold, and enjoy!