Friday, March 1, 2013

CM4>$=1 lb Lentils (1) Pot Pie and Apple Salad

HI Friends!  So, a few weeks back, while I was in the throws of writing my memoirs--for some odd reason I felt compelled to do so--I was also continuing my quest of Cooking More fore Less with the topic of 1 lb. of lentils.  It was seriously like the two loaves and five fish.  It just kept multiplying.  I used them in over six different recipes for the week, and the possibilities were endless it seemed.  I believe I made some of my very favorite things while thinking of ways to incorporate these little brown beauties in dishes.  And here are all of the recipes I came up with.  They are all tucked into my six composition books that I filled completely during my Blue Period--the month of February I spent in writing--so I had to sift through the books and take pictures of the recipes so I could find them easily.

Without further ado, I give you 1 lb. of Lentils!

The method of cooking lentils is so easy-peasy.  I think every person could keep a couple pounds of lentils around because they only take a half hour to cook and are perfect for a rushed dinner if you have unexpected company, and do not have time two hours t least to cook your big beans like chickpeas or kidneys.  Full of protein too.  Go super well with rice or sweet potatoes, or both as you will see.

Cooking Lentils:
Grab a big stock pot, fill it about three quarters full of water.  Or you can just do it in doubles.  Two cups of water for every one cup of lentils.  Doesn't matter much to me. Wash your lentils in a colander and pick out any rocks or stems you find in there. And, yes, sometimes you will find a small pebble that you will be glad you didn't break a tooth on, so this is kinda important.  When washed and picked through, toss them in the stock pot.  Bring the water to a gently boil over medium high heat and let boil for 5 minutes.  Turn the heat to a simmer and lid for 25 minutes.  Get a spoon and ladle out a couple beans, if they are al dente, slightly textured on the outside and soft through the middle they are perfect, if they are a little too crisp, cover and cook for five more minutes.

Drain the lentils in the colander and rinse with cold water to stop the cooking process.  You will have double almost triple the amount of lentils, by the look of it.

Place the cooled beans in a lidded container and store in the fridge.  Scoop out what you need for each recipes.

I also made 1 lb. of white rice at the same time because I love rice and lentils.  Just goes together so well like peanut butter and apples, tomatoes and fresh basil, the yin and yang of food.

The first thing I made was a super delicious lentil and veggie stuffed pot pie.  Almost all of these ingredients have my signature seasoning (Bangarang!) in them, so if you need your own shaker, just order some at my website and I will pop one in the mail for you.

Sliced Pot Pie and Apple Salad

Apple Salad