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Eat Well – Janos Wilder’s Lentil Rice Salad

Why is it that the food tastes so much better when you eat at a restaurant? What is the special magic that chefs use to get the food to taste so wonderful? And can it really be healthy AND tasty?

Chef Janos Wilder, Tucson’s James Beard award-winning chef, reveals the secrets to one of his tasty and healthy dishes in this demonstration video. Chef Wilder and our Tucson Medical Center Wellness team have collaborated to create a program that helps even the most reluctant cook to create meals that are delightfully sumptuous and healthy to boot. From demonstration lunch and learn sessions with Chef Janos at The Carriage House, Chef Janos-inspired dishes on TMC patient and public menus, to easy to follow recipes and videos with Chef Janos we’ve got you covered. Check out this tasty and easy to prepare Lentil Rice Salad.  Click here to download the Lentil Rice Salad Recipe Card

Lentil Rice Salad

Yield: 4 cups


¾ Cup Toasted blanched slivered almonds
1 Cup Green lentils, cooked, available at Trader Joe’s
½ Cup Uncle Ben’s long grain rice
1 Cup Chicken broth or substitute water if needed
1 Cup Grated, peeled carrots
¼ Cup Finely diced red onion
¼ Cup Finely chopped parsley
¼ Cup Crumbled feta cheese

Lemon Mustard Vinaigrette


½ Cup Olive oil
5 Tbs Lemon juice
2 Tbs Whole-grain mustard
Salt and pepper to taste


  1. Cook rice in chicken stock or water 20 minutes until rice tender and all liquid absorbed.
  2. While rice is cooking whisk Lemon Mustard Vinaigrette ingredients together.
  3. When rice is done cool it on a sheet pan.
  4. Toss cooled rice and lentils with toasted almonds, carrots, onions, parsley and enough dressing to liberally coat the ingredients. Reserve remaining dressing for a simple green salad or other use.
  5. Sprinkle with feta cheese.

For more recipes, videos and information about The Carriage House partnership check out the Tucson Medical Center website.

Eat Well – Laurie’s Beet-Walnut Dip

While you’ll have to wait in other states for good local grown beets, now is the time in Arizona with our year round gardening. And while beets seem to be a love ’em or hate ’em vegetable this month we’re taking a dive into this beautiful deep red root vegetable and checking out some different as well more traditional ways to enjoy them.Perhaps one will take your fancy!

Beet Benefits

Beets provide many vitamins and minerals as well as being a good source of fiber. They have high levels of folate, vitamin C, potassium, and phytosterols, which are thought to help lower cholesterol levels. Beets also are a source of phytonutrient betalain, the pigment that gives beets their deep red color and is also thought to have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.

Beets are also rich source of natural nitrates, (distinct from those nitrates or nitrates added to processed meats, which are definitely NOT a healthy addition to the diet) and studies utilizing beet juice focused on it’s nitrate component have shown a positive impact on lowering blood pressure. 

In this first beet recipe Nutritionista Laurie Ledford combines beets with walnuts for extra punch as a great source of healthy fats! Perfect for diving into as the pressure mounts this Sunday during the Superbowl

Laurie’s Beet and Walnut Dip

Beet Walnut DipMakes 3 cups


1 lb beets, trimmed and scrubbed

1 cup walnut pieces

1 clove garlic, peeled

1 Tbsp lemon juice

1 tsp fresh thyme leaves (or 1/3 tsp dried thyme)

1/2 tsp salt

2 Tbsp olive oil

6 oz low-fat plain Greek yogurt (or sour cream, but NOT regular yogurt)



1. Place beets in a small pot and cover with water. Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce

heat to simmer and cook until beets can be pierced by a fork or small knife without

resistance. (20-40- minutes, depending upon size.)

2. Drain and cover with cold water to cool. When beets are cool enough to handle,

peel away skins.

3. Meanwhile, in a dry sauté pan, toast walnuts over low heat, stirring occasionally,

until fragrant, about 5-7 minutes. (Or toast in toaster oven.) Allow to cool.

4. In a food processor, chop walnuts with the garlic until fine.

5. Add beets, lemon juice, thyme, and salt. Puree.

6. With motor running, drizzle in olive oil.

7. Add yogurt and process to combine.

8. Taste and add more lemon juice or salt, if necessary

9. Transfer to a serving bowl. Chill up to 24 hrs.

10. Serve with pita chips or crackers.
beet walnut dip