Don’t Take People’s Crap About Your Awesome Food Choices + Staple Seasoned Lentils Recipe (Instant Pot and Stove Top)

July 24, 2017 / Molly Patrick /

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People’s negative reactions to my plant based food choices have never bothered me. Maybe it’s because I’ve never eaten meat in my life, so I’m used to being the odd one out. Maybe it’s because I used to get bullied for how I ate when I was younger, and that taught me how NOT to treat people. Or maybe it’s because I’ve learned to give zero fucks about what anyone has to say about what food I put in my beautiful bod.

That said, I’ve helped people transition to eating a healthy plant based diet for over a decade, so I know full well that other people’s opinions can be a big issue when making the switch.

I’ve thought a lot about why this is such a struggle, and I think I’ve cracked it.

Anytime we start or stop a habit, whether it’s changing our diet, quitting drinking, quitting smoking, or starting an exercise regimen, there are two components that we must face.

  1. The first is the actual act of changing the habit (this is all about you).
  2. The second is the emotional tension caused by people’s reaction to your changing that habit (this is all about them).

First let’s look at the actual act of change.

These are the tangible adjustments, that when repeated over and over again, lead to creating a healthy habit or breaking a shitty one.

These are things like:

  • Buying plant based ingredients at the grocery store.
  • Eating blueberries instead of ice cream.
  • Batch cooking.
  • Requesting a meal that isn’t on the menu when you go out to eat.
  • Bringing an oil free, plant based dish to a potluck.
  • Spreading cashew cheese on your bagel instead of cream cheese.

The second component of changing a habit is something that most people never factor in. It’s the  emotional tension caused by other people’s reaction to your changing that habit.

These are things like:

  • Feeling like you have to defend your food choices now that you eat healthy, but back when you ate like shit, people had nothing to say about what you put in your mouth.
  • Hearing how much your partner misses having ice cream with you when you watch TV together.
  • Explaining your lunch to people who are giving you faces and scrunching their nose.
  • Having your family vocalize how much they did not enjoy the plant based dinner you so lovingly prepared for them.
  • Getting frustrated looks from the server and feeling like a pain in the ass when it takes 10 minutes to order your meal at a restaurant.
  • Trying to explain to the people around you that yes, you are getting PLENTY of protein, and no, oil is not heart healthy.
  • Informing your doctor that you can get enough iron and calcium from plants, while they insist that you eat more meat and drink more milk.

Change is hard. But it’s the emotional weight, created by other people’s reaction to your change, that’s the killer.

But only if you allow it.

Listen up my dear, because this next sentence is a game changer.

When people have something negative
or unsupportive to say to you about your healthy changes, it has absolutely NOTHING to do with you. It is a pure reflection of them.

So if you commit to not taking their words… and opinions… and lectures… and eye rolls… and shitty comments personally – they will hold zero validity and you will be free of the emotional weight of negative, unsupportive reactions to you KICKING ASS in life.

So strap in. Find your people. Lace up your armor of love. And bring it the fuck on. Let people say what they want, feel how they will, and act however they please. All you have to do is let it roll off you, send them love, keep doing your thing, and love yourself through the process.

You and I can sip turmeric lattés and eat big fat bean burgers together, while giving zero fucks about what other people think about our plant eating ways. Damn right, that’s a high five comin’ your way!

Have you had to defend your food choices? Talk to me in the comments below.

Today I’m giving you a basic recipe that every whole food plant based eater should have on hand. Once you make these tasty lentils you can add them to lots of things, including burgers and salads. Super simple and super yum.

Staple Seasoned Lentil Recipe

Author: Molly Patrick of Clean Food Dirty Girl

Ingredients

Instant Pot Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups brown or green lentils 285g
  • 1/2 cup yellow onion diced (65g)
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 3/4 cups water 420ml
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 5 turns black pepper

Stovetop Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups brown or green lentils 285g
  • 1/2 cup yellow onion diced (65g)
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3 cups water 475ml
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 5 turns black pepper

Instructions

Instant Pot Directions

  • Soak the lentils in water for a couple minutes, rubbing them between your fingers to clean them and picking out any stones, shriveled lentils or debris, then transfer to a fine mesh strainer. Tap the strainer on the side of the sink to get out as much excess water as possible.
  • Press the saute button on your instant pot and heat up for 1 minute. Add the onions and cook for 2 minutes, stirring often. Add the garlic, oregano and lentils to the pot and stir for 1 minute.
  • Add the bay leaf and the (new) water and stir. Turn off the IP and lock the lid into place, making sure the nozzle is in the sealing position.
  • Use the Manual setting and set the timer for 15 minutes.
  • When the timer goes off, allow the pressure to naturally release. After 15 minutes, release any remaining pressure, using the quick release method. Lentils should be tender and not crunchy. Remove and discard the bay leaf, stir in the salt and pepper, and transfer to a container to cool.

Stovetop Directions

  • Soak the lentils in water for a couple minutes, rubbing them between your fingers to clean them and picking out any stones, shriveled lentils or debris, then transfer to a fine mesh strainer. Tap the strainer on the side of the sink to get out as much excess water as possible.
  • Heat a medium-sized pot over medium heat for 1 minute. Add the onion to the pot and cook for 2 minutes, stirring often and adding a little splash of water if necessary to keep from sticking to the bottom of the pot.
  • Add the garlic, oregano and lentils to the pot and stir for 1 minute. Add the bay leaf and the (new) water and stir. Bring the lentils just to a boil and then immediately turn the heat way down until they reach just a gentle simmer.
  • Very gently simmer the lentils, uncovered for 32-35 minutes, until all of the water is absorbed and the lentils are soft, but not falling apart. It might take longer depending on your elevation. If the water is absorbed before the lentils are soft, add a bit more water and continue cooking until tender.
  • Lentils are done when they are tender and not crunchy, but you do not want to overcook them until they are overly soft and mushy. Remove and discard the bay leaf, stir in the salt and pepper, and transfer to a container to cool.


Wishing you a happy week. May it be filled with giving your shoulders a break and releasing emotional weight.

Xo
Molly

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Written by ex-boozer, ex-smoker, Co-founder, and CEO, Molly Patrick. They will help you eat more plants while throwing perfection down the garbage disposal.

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15 Comments

  1. Agness of Run Agness Run on July 28, 2017 at 7:27 am

    Excellent recipe, Molly! How do you manage to ignore negative comments and unpleasant behavior?

    • Luanne Teoh on August 8, 2017 at 10:33 pm

      Hi Agnes,
      We deal with negative comments and hate mail by not taking it personally. Know that when someone spews hate and negativity, it’s a reflection of them so we send them love and wish them well and hope their day and lives improve. Hope that answers your question.

  2. Genny cat on September 2, 2017 at 11:40 pm

    4 stars
    HI FB group. I have many food intolerances having leaky gut disease, so I can’t do mushrooms. Have any of you tried to modify this yummy looking, sounding and I’m sure tasty recipe omitting or subbing sinmething else for the mushrooms?????

    • Team Clean Food Dirty Girl on September 5, 2017 at 6:59 am

      Hi Genny cat,

      Hmmm, I’m thinking that you intended to comment on a different recipe as this one does not have mushrooms. BUT, depending on the recipe cauliflower, jackfruit, tofu and tempeh can usually sub in for mushrooms. Thanks for stopping by.

      Karen
      Team Dirty Girl

  3. Leo on October 24, 2017 at 5:49 am

    Just the reminder I needed at just the right time. Thanks for taking the time to write it down for the rest of us.

    • Meghann Milton on October 24, 2017 at 7:55 am

      Happy to hear that Molly’s words resonated with you Leo. 🙂

      Meghann
      Team Dirty Girl

  4. Heidi on November 8, 2017 at 1:49 pm

    5 stars
    This has become a staple recipe for me. I’m going to double batch and freeze individual portions. I’ve used the lentils in tacos, wraps with hummus, salads, in soups, and more. The garlic, oregano, and bay leaf are subtle enough that I’ve been able to use them in a variety of ethnic dishes.

    • Meghann Milton on November 8, 2017 at 4:53 pm

      Awesome to hear that you’ve found a new staple recipe here Heidi! Double batching and freezing is an excellent time-saving technique. 😉

      Meghann
      Team Dirty Girl

  5. Chan on February 5, 2018 at 7:24 pm

    Interesting case of brainwashing.

    Thanks

  6. Jeannie on September 22, 2018 at 10:27 am

    Occasionally recipes (including CFDG recipes) call for a can of lentils. Is this recipe equivalent to 1 can of lentils?

    • Team Clean Food Dirty Girl on September 22, 2018 at 11:43 am

      Hi Jeannie, A standard can of lentils (or any bean for that matter) is about 1.5 cups. This recipe starts with 1.5 cups dry so cooked you’ll end up with probably 3 cups (or close to 2 cans worth). ~Karen

  7. Leslie on June 24, 2019 at 1:11 pm

    5 stars
    Excellent recipe to add a little something extra to lentils. I cooked them in my homemade veggie broth (made from veggie scraps) and they came out delicious.Le

    • Team Clean Food Dirty Girl on June 24, 2019 at 5:43 pm

      Perfect way to use homemade veggie broth. Thanks for letting us know you loved the recipe! ~Karen

  8. katelyn mullins on February 3, 2020 at 1:57 pm

    Hi!!!! When I push manual, do u select low or high pressure? Thanks!

    • Molly Patrick on February 3, 2020 at 10:12 pm

      High 🙂

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