Lentils with Tomato and Onion
4.23.10 § 4 Comments
Those nights when I’m too tired to do extensive cooking but still want something tasty and moderately healthy seem to be occurring with increased frequency these days. I’ll admit there have been multiple nights when I’ve given up and ordered pizza (and then proceeded to eat the whole thing), but when I can, I still try to cook. The main motivation for this is that if I don’t cook at night, it also usually means that I have to buy lunch during the day. I am not a fan of paying for my lunch.
I made this for the first time on a rainy night when I wanted something hearty but did not feel like slaving (for too long) over a hot stove. Like way too many of the recipes I’ve been using lately, I found it on Smitten Kitchen, which is possibly my favorite food blog of all time.
There is no good reason why, but I’ve never really cooked with lentils before. I like lentils. I’ll sometimes order them at restaurants. They’re a pantry staple. Really, there is no excuse for the fact that I’ve never used them. This realization is what led me to pick this recipe from all of the enticing choices on Smitten Kitchen.
It turned out well. It’s really easy and, like so many dishes that I love, once you’ve done the prep work you can just walk away and let it simmer until time to eat. The leftovers were great. What more can you ask for?
2 tsp good olive oil
2 cups large-diced yellow onions (2 onions)
2 cups large-diced carrots (3 to 4 carrots)
1 tbsp minced garlic (3 cloves)
1 (28-ounce) can whole plum tomatoes
1 cup French green lentils (7 ounces)
2 cups chicken broth
2 tsp mild curry powder
2 tsp chopped fresh thyme leaves
1 tsp kosher salt
¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
Heat the oil in a large saucepan. Add onions and carrots, cooking over medium-low heat for 8 to 10 minutes, until the onions start to brown, stirring occasionally. Add garlic and cook one minute longer.
Reserving the juice, coarsely chop the canned tomatoes (you can do this with a food processor if you like). Wash the lentils and make sure there aren’t any stones mixed in, because biting down on a rock is never fun.
Add the tomatoes (with juice), lentils, broth, curry powder, thyme, salt and pepper to the pan. Raise the heat to bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer covered for about 40 minutes, until the lentils are tender. Check occasionally to be sure the liquid is still simmering. Remove from the heat and allow the lentils to sit covered for another 10 minutes. Add the vinegar, season to taste and serve hot.
*Don’t forget the vinegar when you are ready to eat! It really makes a difference in the dish.