Lightened Up Protein Power Goddess Bowl

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This week, the first sign of flowers and leaves put me into full Spring mode. My meals have been fresher than ever and I’m feeling on fire energy wise.

It’s about time!

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The hot yoga sessions are also helping tremendously. (Thank you, by the way, for your great comments yesterday.) I’ve been to 4 hot yoga sessions now and you could pretty much say that I’m addicted. But, more on that later.

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[We need to mow the lawn and weed the garden! eek…it begins]

Yesterday, I was craving an old favourite- the Protein Power Goddess Bowl that I adapted from The Coup Cookbook. I’ve been smitten with this salad since I made it last year and the tahini-Lemon dressing is just to die for!

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My mission yesterday was simple: To lighten up this salad for Spring.

I wouldn’t call this salad heavy per say, but I was never crazy about the 1/2 cup of olive oil that the original recipe calls for. I knew with a bit of work, I could create a lighter Tahini dressing that would taste just as tempting as the original.

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5 from 2 reviews
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Protein Power Goddess Bowl

Vegan, nut-free, refined sugar-free, soy-free

By

This hearty recipe is inspired by a vegetarian restaurant called The Coup in Calgary, Alberta. A rich, tangy lemon-tahini sauce coats chewy French green lentils, spelt berries, and crunchy vegetables. I suggest serving a couple spoonfuls of this recipe on top of a salad or alongside crackers and hummus—a little bit goes a long way.

Yield
6 cups
Prep Time
Cook time

Ingredients:

For the goddess bowl:
  • 1 cup uncooked French green lentils (2 to 2 3/4 cups cooked)
  • 1 cup uncooked spelt berries or wheat berries (2 cups cooked)
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 medium or large red onion, chopped
  • 3 to 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 1 cup grape tomatoes, halved or 1 large tomato, chopped
  • 3 packed cups baby spinach, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley, minced
  • 1 batch Lemon-Tahini Dressing
  • Fine sea salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste
  • Chopped green onion and lemon zest, to garnish (optional)
For the Lemon-Tahini Dressing:
  • 1 large garlic clove
  • 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup tahini
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons nutritional yeast, to taste
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt

Directions:

  1. Soak the spelt berries in a bowl of water overnight, or for at least 8 to 12 hours. Drain and rinse well.
  2. Add the drained spelt berries into a medium pot and cover with a couple inches of water. Bring to a low boil over high heat, then reduce heat to medium, cover, and simmer for 30 to 35 minutes until tender, but still chewy. Drain excess water.
  3. Rinse and drain the lentils. Add to a medium pot and cover with a couple inches of water. Increase heat to high and bring to a boil and then immediately reduce the heat to medium and simmer, uncovered, for 15 to 20 minutes until tender, but still a bit chewy. French lentils will hold their shape beautifully and won't break down like regular green or brown lentils. Drain well.
  4. Prepare the Lemon-Tahini Dressing: Mince the garlic in a mini food processor. Add the rest of the ingredients and process until smooth. Set aside.
  5. In a large skillet or pot, add the oil, onion, and garlic, along with a pinch of salt. Stir. Sauté over medium heat for 3 to 5 minutes, until the onion softens.
  6. Stir in the chopped red pepper and tomato and sauté for another 7 to 8 minutes.
  7. Add the spinach, cooked spelt berries and lentils, and stir to combine. Sauté until just wilted. Remove the pot from the heat.
  8. Stir in all of the Lemon-Tahini Dressing, and the fresh parsley. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  9. Serve with chopped green onion and lemon zest on top, if desired. This salad is lovely served on top of a leafy green salad, or you can serve it with hummus and crackers on the side too.

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Lightening up the Tahini-Lemon dressing was a huge success! I cut down the oil by 75% and the dressing still tasted wonderful.

Here are the changes I made to the lightened up version:

  • I added another garlic clove (to make 3) (to add more flava!)
  • I added 2-3 more tbsp water (to thin it out more)

 

I was worried the taste would be compromised but it was just as addicting like I remembered. Even if you don’t want to make this lentil salad, you could always make the dressing and use it for salads all week long. It is truly one of my most loved homemade dressings to date.

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Once you cook your desired grains and make the dressing, you simply sauté some vegetables of your choice until tender.

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Yesterday, I added Lacinato Kale instead of spinach and I loved it! It’s less bitter than regular kale.

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Mix in your grains and dressing.

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When it’s all cooked, remove from heat and stir in the minced Parsley for another kick of fresh flavour.

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Taste test… Uncontrollably!

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Serve with a lemon wedge and zest and you have yourself a protein and fibre packed dinner! It’s creamy & comforting, with a tangy kick that is just irresistible.

This will definitely be my go-to version of this salad from now on. We didn’t miss the 6 tablespoons of oil at all.

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Have a good one!

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{ 16 comments… read them below or add one }

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Shivani Jain December 2, 2016

I really want to make this lemon tahini dressing for a gathering tomorrow, with the weekend glow kale salad:) However, I was wondering if there’s a substitute for the nutritional yeast by any chance?

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Kelly June 29, 2016
Recipe Rating:

I ran across this recipe the other day. I just made it last night. I only had green lentils, but I didn’t cook them as long so that they didn’t get mushy and I used kale instead of spinach. I love it! I loved it hot and cold! Thank you so much! This will be a go to for weekday lunches :)

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Alyssa May 17, 2016
Recipe Rating:

Another amazing recipe! And that dressing…I had to stop myself from drinking the dressing right out of the food processor!

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Angela Liddon May 19, 2016

Haha, I’m glad you liked the recipe, Alyssa! (I love that dressing too, it’s one of my favs!)

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Kate March 17, 2016

I wonder about experimenting with buckwheat groats instead? I have never used them but have some in the cupboard. Ideas? :)

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Corrine February 16, 2016

Hi Angela – I just made this recipe for dinner last night and it was delicious! The dressing is so addictive and the meal overall isn’t heavy. I tweaked the recipe just a bit and replaced the spelt berries with goji berries because spelt berries weren’t available at the grocery store. I was a little nervous about how this change would affect the recipe, but let me tell you it was amazing! The combination of the tangy sauce with the sweet flavor of the goji berries was something I couldn’t get enough of. I will definitely make this again. Thanks!

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Jennifer January 5, 2016

So…this may be too late but i am trying to make this for dinner tonight from the cookbook recipe. Thing is the ingredients listing says Speltberries soaked overnight but the recipe says cook according to table on page 302. So, do i soak over night then drain any remaining water then add the 1.5 cups water and cook or do i add the 1.5 cups in addition to the overnight water? They have increased in size considerably so ran to your site to check but I can’t even find the same recipe! Any help is very appreciated. Hopefully you will see this soon and my dinner will be saved! Thanks!

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Nidhi January 5, 2016

Hi Angela… I am not vegan but have tried many of your recipes.I love them..!!! Especially the salads and bars. They are delicious and healthy. I really want to try this salad but I don’t have access to nutritional yeast. Can you please suggest a substitution for same for dressing? Thanks a ton for all the recipes. :)

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abeer November 14, 2015

Hello,
I love your website, I was just wondering do you mind adding the nutritional information of each recipe!

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Chelsea September 14, 2015

Just made your tahini sauce. It was absolute perfection and a HUGE hit with my (normally very picky) 8 year old boy. You’re making vegan eating so easy!

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Dilara August 10, 2015

I just made this and I absolutely love it! The dressing adds so much flavour. I did not use nutritional yeast and it was still delicious! I am not vegetarian but I do look for healthy recipes and I have tried a few of your recipes and I am in love with them!
Thanks!

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Kara July 27, 2015

This was great! Before your blog, I thought I could NEVER do Vegan. Now I incorporate Vegan meals into the weekly plan, but also use some of your recipes and incorporate meat (I hope that isn’t a desecration to your goal :-) I’ve just found that your seasonings are better than most recipes out there and my husband and I are very much meat-eaters, tho we also highly value plant-based nutrients and spices.

I’ve tried to like green lentils and can’t, so I substituted grilled chicken cubes for the lentils and quinoa for the brown rice part… also just added some cumen to the mix. And sprinkled the top with feta cheese. Everything else was the same as your recipe and it’s DELICIOUS! Thank yoU!

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Karen July 21, 2015

I made this for dinner last night – YUM. I cooked 1 cup quinoa (in place of the berries) but didn’t need it all – 3/4 cup will probably be fine. Skipped the raw garlic in the sauce. Served hot, sprinkled with toasted pepitas. My husband took the leftovers for lunch today – I guess he doesn’t mind glowing. Thanks!

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Rebecca July 9, 2015

As soon as I saw this recipe, I had to make it immediately! I cooked it tonight and it was absolutely gorgeous….it is now my new favourite meal I’ve found since going veggie a year ago. My husband and I ate ALL of the 6 cup yield in one sitting, it was so lovely! I have no idea how it compares to the original, but I loved it as it is

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Shawna June 17, 2015

I know this recipe has been around for awhile, but I just got around to making it last night. We subbed cilantro for parsley because my husband will not eat anything with parsley in it. It turned out great! My husband has demanded that this recipe be included in the weekly rotation. Thanks for another great recipe!

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Shawna June 17, 2015

I know this recipe has been around for awhile, but I just got around to making it last night. We subbed cilantro for parsley because my husband will not eat anything with parsley in it. It turned out great! My husband has demanded that this recipe be included in the weekly rotation. Thanks for another great recipe!

Reply

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