Wednesday, November 4, 2009

finger on the pulse

in italy, lentils are traditionally eaten on new year's day, as a symbol of good luck and prosperity. it's something about the lentils resembling coins -- -- something like that-- idk.

what i DO know is that this is a super simple recipe that only requires a few staple ingredients to pull together. this preparation has "side dish" written all over it, and pairs especially well w/ fish, poultry, or pork.

New Year's Lentils

1 large onion, small dice
2 stalks celery, small dice
1 large carrot, medium dice
3 cloves garlic, rough chop
2 cups brown lentils
3 quarts water
2 bay leaves

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup red wine (or balsamic) vinegar

salt & pepper to taste

*this is a one-pot deal. lentils double in volume as the cook; make sure to start w/ a pot large enough to hold the finished product -- a 4-6 qt sauce pot will do just fine.

1. saute onion, garlic, celery, and carrot in about 3 TBS of olive oil over medium heat until onion turns translucent -- about 6-8 minutes.

2. add water, and a HEAVY pinch of salt (~1 TBS) to the pot, bring to a boil. add the lentils and bay leaves, return to a boil then reduce to a simmer. simmer, covered, for 20-40 minutes or until done.

3. drain lentils through a strainer. combine lentils, 1/2 cup of olive oil, and 1/2 of red wine vinegar in a mixing bowl (or just rinse out the pot and return them from whence they came).

-- garnish w/ parsley and serve either hot or at room temperature

© 2009 c. c. villani @ "mission: insatiable" -

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