Food for Thought, July 2022

Jul 4, 2022

A plan(e)t-based diet

Let’s touch base on why this blog exists.

Part of the Global Tree Initiative’s (GTI) mission is to raise awareness of how one person’s actions can make a global impact.

Plant YOUR tree.  Grow OUR forest.  Save THEIR future, the future of our children and theirs to come.  Perhaps that is a simplistic solution.  Nonetheless, it highlights the notion that we can do more by working individually but together.

With Food for Thought, we are showing that, likewise, what we eat can make a difference.

A quarter of all global greenhouse gas emissions come from food.  That is the impact of what it takes to grow, make, package and transport the food on your plate.  Just understanding these two simple sentences starts us thinking more responsibly and wanting to make more informed choices.

So how can we fight climate change with our food selections?

We can shift to climate-smart eating!

Here are six specific ways we can reduce the carbon footprint of what we eat:

  • Eat more plants.
  • Buy more beans.
  • Cut food waste.
  • Choose local and seasonal produce.
  • Look for carbon labeling.
  • Say NO to plastic bags!

Stay tuned to our Food for Thought blog to learn more!

For now, here is a simple, filling, and tasty bean recipe:

Red Lentils Koftes – a Middle Eastern delicacy

  • 1 cup (170g) red lentils
  • 1 1/4 cups (300ml) vegetable stock*
  • 1/2 cup (50g) rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup (30g) fresh parsley
  • 1/2 onion, finely chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • ½ tsp chili flakes
  • 2 tbsp ketchup

*You can use tap water instead. Season with salt and black pepper.

  1. Cook the red lentils with the vegetable stock. Bring them to a boil, then reduce to simmer and let them bubble away on low heat for around 20 minutes, or until all the liquid has been absorbed. Allow cooling.
  2. Chop the parsley, onion, and garlic.
  3. Preheat the oven to 392ºF (200°C), and line a large baking tray with a reusable liner (or parchment paper).
  4. In a large bowl, add the cooled lentils and the remaining ingredients. Mix well until combined.
  5. To create the koftes, shape the mixture into round patties and add them to the baking tray. Bake for 20-25 minutes (the koftes will harden once cool, so don’t worry if they are too soft after 20 minutes).

These little patties are nourishing and filling. You can have them with a hearty salad, drizzled with lemon juice. Or, you could dip them in a bowl of hummus – this was the very first recipe we shared on our Food 4 Thought blog!

We are so happy to share this time with you learning together. See you next time!  Please, leave us comments and share your ideas and recipes.

*Learn more here.


  1. Jacie

    This is an awesome blog. Thank you for the education as well as the recipes!

    • Kika Gusmao

      Thank you so much for your support, Jacie. Make sure you try these koftes 😉

  2. Julie Caldwell

    I cook your recipes every month. Looking forward to cooking this one, this month. Thank you so much!!! These recipes are terrific help to keeping on a plant based diet. Yum-Yum!

    • Kika Gusmao

      Hey Julie, thank you so much for the kind words. I’m really happy you enjoy the recipes <3

  3. Jennifer Troyan

    My goodness! This sounds yummy. Thanks for sharing. Your pics are great and make the food look appetizing.

    • Kika Gusmao

      Thank you, Jenn!
      Thank you for your kind words <3
      If you get to try it, share your thoughts with us 😀
      Be well.


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