12 March 2011

Weekend Cooking: The Kitchen Journal 2

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Last week, Rikki over at The Bookkeeper, shared a recipe for Lentil-Vegetable Pie. I loved the sound of the ingredients but because we had omelets for breakfast, I didn't want to use eggs again for dinner, which were required to make the casserole.

So instead I kind of stole the idea and turned the recipe into a Lentil-Vegetable stew. Following Rikki's ingredient list, I used celery, parsnips, 1 white potato, 1 sweet potato, and carrots for my root vegetables. I left out the tomatoes and added a red bell pepper and common white mushrooms. I kept the wine and tomato paste. For seasonings I started with thyme, pepper, lots of garlic, and 2 tablespoons powdered organic vegetarian broth.

I started by washing a pound of green lentils and placing them in a soup pot, along with enough water to cover them by about an inch. I put the pot over medium high heat, and then chopped the veggies, adding them to lentils as I went. I began with the vegetables that take the longest to cook, and held off adding the mushrooms right away.

I let the stew simmer for about 15 minutes, or until the lentils began to soften. Then I stirred in the powdered broth, a bit of wine, a squeeze of tomato paste, pepper, and thyme. I believe I added other spices (I almost always add a few drops of hot sauce or hot red pepper flakes), but failed to keep accurate notes.

After another 5 minutes or so, I stirred in the mushrooms. That's when I decided I wanted some greens, so I added one box of chopped frozen spinach (which I partially thawed in the microwave before I added it to the pot). I let the stew simmer until the spinach was heated through and the lentils were cooked but not mushy.

One of the great things about lentils is that I went from raw vegetables to sit-down dinner in under an hour. Stir the stew every once in a while and watch the liquid level; you don't want it to get too dry. I was happy to discover an easy, delicious, and nutritious dinner.

Thanks to Rikki for the inspiration. I had enough stew for two dinners with some left over to freeze.


27 comments:

leeswammes 3/12/11, 7:33 AM  

Looks nice, Beth. Great that you were inspired by another Weekend Cooker!

I love lentils, had them recently in a recipe from Chinoiseries that she shared on Weekend Cooking. I love it when we use each other's recipes.

Julie P. 3/12/11, 7:38 AM  

I made something similar a few weeks ago but with less veggies. It was good, but I was the only one who would eat it.

Melissa 3/12/11, 7:52 AM  

This sounds really good!

Beth 3/12/11, 7:56 AM  

This sounds great! And huzzah for pictures!

caite 3/12/11, 8:27 AM  

I think I really need to make more lentil dishes! sounds tasty and nutritious.

Carol @ There's Always Thyme to Cook 3/12/11, 9:23 AM  

A dinner in under an hour sounds perfect to me! Love lentils, love everything in that stew, your dish looks very hearty!

TheBookGirl 3/12/11, 9:35 AM  

Lentils are one of the few vegetarian staples that my husband really enjoys. This sounds delicious to me, and even more impressive, it sounds good to him too, lol.
Thanks for this recipe :)

Dawn @ sheIsTooFondOfBooks 3/12/11, 9:58 AM  

I envy your confidence in the kitchen!

This stew sounds delicious -- I enjoy the Progresso lentil soup, but know that it's full of sodium. The addition of more fresh veggies (and greens!), makes your stew even more appealing.

You'll get to try Rikki's Lentil-Veg Pie another time ...

Rikki 3/12/11, 9:59 AM  

Hey, great that my recipe inspired you. I'm glad it worked out ok. The nice thing is that those veggie dishes can be adapted in all sorts of ways.
BTW, I think the pie would be great even without the aggs, since they are only put on top between the veggies and the potato covering.

Esme 3/12/11, 10:33 AM  

I am going to have to try this-I quite like lentils.

Margaret 3/12/11, 10:53 AM  

I'm a vegetarian and this sounds great! I'll definitely show this one to my mom.

Alex 3/12/11, 11:40 AM  

I am getting more and more into lentils, thanks to my daughter who loves them, so this is a definite will do.

Michelle 3/12/11, 12:24 PM  

You are a master in the kitchen. I couldn't ever adapt things, I need specific instructions. Even then it's a calculated risk, haha.

Kim 3/12/11, 12:33 PM  

You are so creative and brave! I have learned to adapt recipes, but I would call what you did, a major overhaul...I wish I liked lentils and root vegetables more. I try---really I do. I may give this recipe a shot though, the colors are so pretty.
*smiles*

Stacy at A Novel Source 3/12/11, 12:33 PM  

I love stews! I could have stew every night of the week if my family enjoyed them too...unfortunately they get bored with them....but this one with lentils sounds great!

Diann 3/12/11, 1:23 PM  

I need to add more lentils to our menu. Maybe I will start with this recp.

Nan 3/12/11, 2:42 PM  

I made a lentil stew this week too! Mine were black lentils. Recipe is here if you want to see it:

http://lettersfromahillfarm.blogspot.com/2009/01/variations-on-stew.html

Chinoiseries 3/12/11, 4:12 PM  

This is what I love about Weekend Cooking: to be inspired by others and to inspire in return :)
Your dish looks really tasty and wholesome, makes me feel hungry again!

Heather 3/12/11, 11:35 PM  

This looks tasty and very easy. Just 'winging it' can be a fun way to cook.

Joy Weese Moll 3/13/11, 12:36 AM  

What a fun way to invent a recipe! Looks delicious.

Jane of Australia 3/13/11, 4:37 AM  

hmm saving this one for winter, yes we are heading in as yu are heading out.
Ive been missing for a while, but Im back now.

Rebecca Rasmussen 3/13/11, 12:51 PM  

This looks absolutely delicious! I wish I was eating it right now :0

Marie 3/13/11, 2:18 PM  

I love inventing new recipes by throwing stuff together. This one looks great. I heart lentils.

Connolly-Ahern (Col Reads) 3/13/11, 2:26 PM  

This looks delicious, and veggie-riffic. I'm glad you enjoyed it!

Beth Hoffman 3/13/11, 4:23 PM  

This recipe has my name all over it, and I loved that you added spinach! Thanks for yet another nice addition to my recipe collection.

Sheila (Bookjourney) 3/13/11, 5:45 PM  

That looks good! I was out of town and not organized enough to get a post up - should be back next week though.

Zibilee 3/13/11, 11:33 PM  

I love lentils but hardly ever eat them, as everyone else in my house turns their nose up at them. I still remember being in college, and my favorite foods were potato pancakes and lentil soup. Thanks for sharing this recipe!

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