Happiness in a bowl! Lentils are a good-mood superstar, offering blood-sugar-moderating fiber, energizing iron and calming magnesium. Antioxidant-rich purple foods and berries promote mental clarity. Beets’ abundant folate increases blood flow to the brain and relaxes blood vessels. If you like, add goat cheese for a good balance of carbs, fats and protein, plus added calcium.
• 7 medium beets (any color)
• ¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
• ¾ teaspoon salt, divided
• 1 cup green or brown lentils
• Pinch of black pepper
• 6 ounces raspberries, divided
• 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
• Zest of ½ orange
• 2 tablespoons orange juice
• 1 small shallot (thinly sliced)
• ½ cup chopped fresh mint
• ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
• ⅓ cup chopped pistachios
• ¼ cup sunflower seeds
1. Preheat oven to 425°. On a large sheet of foil, rub beets with 1 tablespoon oil and season with 1 /8 teaspoon salt. Wrap in the foil, and roast in oven for 45 minutes, until tender. (Some larger beets might take 10–20 minutes more.) Unwrap and let cool; then peel and cut into wedges. Place in a large bowl.
2. Place lentils in a small saucepan and cover with plenty of water. Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer 15–20 minutes (al dente). Drain well, and stir in 1 tablespoon olive oil, ½ teaspoon salt and a pinch of pepper. Set aside to cool.
3. In a small bowl, mash ½ cup packed raspberries with ¼ cup oil to make a chunky sauce. Whisk in vinegar, orange zest and juice, and ⅛ teaspoon salt. Pour over beets, and toss. Add sliced shallot, remaining raspberries, mint and parsley; toss again.
4. To serve, spoon ½ cup lentils into each of four bowls. Arrange beet mixture on top, and garnish with pistachios and sunflower seeds.