Two incredible plant-based doctors from Plant Based TeleHealth discussed the medicinal properties in their delicious creations while preparing them for us. Dr. Laurie Marbas prepared lentil walnut taquitos and Dr. Christina Miller made Big Bad Spaghetti Squash Burrito Bowls. They picked ingredients for taste and nutrition with an emphasis on optimal health. It is important to have a mixture of raw and cooked whole foods, to ensure you get the nutrients that are maximized both ways. They also discussed alternatives to using oils in their recipes, and they both pointed out that they have healed many patients through plant-based eating. Dr. Marbas even said, “Feeding patients plant-based food is more powerful than my prescription pad.”
For Dr. Marbas’ dish, she used “meat” made from lentils and walnuts. Walnuts are a great source of omega-3s and both doctors pointed out that people with the greatest longevity consume a lot of beans. They mentioned the power of using Allium family veggies–garlic and onion–on a daily basis for anti-viral, anti-fungal, and antibiotic properties. For Dr. MIller’s dish, she used spaghetti squash as the bowl and put in cruciferous veggies–a coleslaw–along with guacamole on top. Every ingredient added to the flavor profile and nutrient density. Both doctors discussed the healing properties of spices and herbs, also essential to great health. They serve these dishes at parties and to their pre-vegan friends and family, and wow them every time!
Lentil Walnut Taquitos
- ½ c uncooked green lentils
- ½ cup diced mushrooms of choice
- ½ cup of walnut pieces
- 4 minced garlic cloves
- ½ tsp chili powder
- ¼ tsp black pepper
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 ½ tsp Hatch green chilis in a can
- ½ can fire roasted tomatoes
- 12 organic corn tortillas yellow works best
- Optional dips:
- Pico de gallo
- Red or green salsas
- Cook lentils according to package instructions. (1/2 cup of uncooked lentils = 1 ½ cup cooked)
- When lentils are just about done (about 20 minutes) add diced mushrooms and mix. Cook an additional 2-3 minutes.
- Mix remaining ingredients in another bowl.
- Once lentils and mushrooms are cooked, add it to the other ingredients and thoroughly mix.
- Place mixture in a food processor and pulse to desired consistency, 20-30 seconds typically is sufficient.
- Pour back in the pan and heat on medium until thoroughly warms and thickens as water evaporates.
- When done heat the tortillas in microwave, 2 at a time between 2 damp paper towels for 30 seconds.
- Place about 2-3 TBS of “meat” in tortilla and roll.
- Place in air fryer for desired crispness (just as the edges begin to brown). I use a Breville smart over on air fryer mode, 400 degrees for 6-7 minutes.
- You can also bake at 400 degrees for about 15 minutes, keep a close eye on them though.
Big Bad Spaghetti Squash Burrito Bowls
- Roasted spaghetti squash:
- 2 medium spaghetti squash about 2 pounds each, halved and seeds removed
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Chili powder
- Cabbage Slaw:
- 3 cups shredded cabbage
- 1 ½ cups or 1 can 15 ounces black beans, rinsed and drained
- 1 red orange, or yellow bell pepper
- 3 green onions chopped, (use both green and white parts)
- Fresh lime juice – about 2-3 limes or to taste
- 1 cup frozen corn kernels thawed
- 1 jalapeno – seeded – adjust to spiciness desired
- Fresh black pepper
- 4-5 ripe tomatoes or 1 pint cherry tomatoes
- 1/4 cup purple onion chopped
- 1 garlic clove roughly chopped
- 1/4 cup fresh cilantro
- Fresh black pepper
- 2 ripe avocados flesh scooped out, and mashed with fork to desired consistency
- Fresh black pepper
- Squeeze of lime about ½ lime to taste
- Pinch of cumin
- 2 TBSPs salsa
- *Optional: Pico de gallo
- 4 tomatoes diced
- 3 tablespoons onion diced
- 1 garlic clove diced
- -Fresh black pepper to taste
- *Optional: 1 mango or 1 peach diced
- *1-2 jalapeno seeded, diced per taste
- Optional toppings: Fresh cilantro chopped green onions, lime wedges
- To roast the spaghetti squash: Preheat the oven to 400° F. Place the halves of spaghetti squash on a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Sprinkle the insides of the squash with cumin, chili pepper, and freshly ground black pepper. Turn them over so the insides are facing down and roast for about 50 minutes, until soft (easily pierced with a fork).
- Meanwhile, to assemble the slaw: In a medium mixing bowl, combine the cabbage, black beans, bell pepper, green onion, cilantro, lime juice, and toss to combine.
- Salsa: Can buy salsa or make your own. If buying, try to get fresh and low sodium. If making, add tomatoes and rest of salsa ingredients to food processor and gently process. Alternatively, can chop and serve as pico de gallo.
- Guacamole: can make or buy at the store. If making, mash avocado with a fork. Add rest of ingredients and mix to combine.
- To assemble, first use a fork to separate and fluff up the flesh of the spaghetti squash. Then divide the slaw into each of the spaghetti squash "bowls," and add a dollop of guacamole. Finish the big bad bowls with another sprinkle of freshly ground black pepper and some extra chopped cilantro, green onion, and lime wedge.
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Donna Dennison is an UnchainedTV writer, graphic designer, video editor, and IG contributor. Donna is also a creative in the film industry.