Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Red Lentil Stew with Basmati Rice - serves 4 with leftovers

I love all beans. They are wonderful not just in soups and stews, but as the main dish in entrees. They make a great subsitution for any starch and pack a great load of vitamins. There are so many beans to choose from, particularly in the bulk section of Central Market/Whole Foods. Most beans require an 8 hour soak if which the case, add about 1/4 cup table salt per every 4 cups of water (this is brining and you'll thank me for this tip when you eat them). They're easy to fix and when perfectly seasoned, a great meal.

2 tsp canola oil
2 cups chopped red onion
1 tbs minced peeled fresh ginger
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 tbls tomato paste
1/2 tbs chili powder
1/4 tsp cloved
1/4 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp coriander
1/4 tsp curry (if you don't like curry, try same amount of allspice)
3 cups vegetable broth
1 cup dried red lentils
1/4 tsp Kosher salt
1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro
4 cups hot cooked basmati rice (cook accrding to pkg directions)
Nann bread, to be served with meal (found at Central Market/Whole Foods)

Heat oil in large Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onion to pan; cook 15 minutes or until tender, stirring occasionally. Add ginger and garlic; cook 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Stir in tomato paste and chili powder through the curry. Stir 1 minute and gradually add broth, stirring with a whisk until blended. Increase the heat to medium-high; bring to a simmer.

Rinse lentils in cold water ; drain. Add lentils to broth mixture and simmer, partially covered, 35 mintues or until lentils are tender, stirring occasionally. Stir in salt. Spoon basmati rice into bowls and ladle with lentils. Top with cilantro and serve.

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