Monday, October 13, 2008

Pink Lentils

These lovely pink pearls (actually more of a salmon color) are a true "triple threat": healthy, delicious, and easy. The first time I snuck them in as a main course, my meat-and-potatoes husband slid the bowl closer to his plate as he said, (surprising him and relieving me), "These lentils are irresistible!" I think you'll agree. Make extra; they're even good cold, right out of the fridge.

Years ago, after my move from New York to Seattle, a friend from my home town in Ohio offered to drive across country and bring my little car to me -- my dear Buick Somerset. Her partner in this adventure was her college roommate Anjum. I have no idea where that little car is today, but this recipe card, written in my 20-something hand, has been cherished and lovingly cared for all these years. Thank you Anjum, for this wonderful Pakistani recipe. It was handed down through your family, and it has found a permanent place within mine.

The general directions on the card have worked well for me over the years, but tonight I took the time to actually measure my ingredients. Here's a more precise version:

Place 1 cup lentils in 2 1/2 cups cold water.

Add 1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon turmeric

and 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper.

Cover, bring to a boil, and simmer until tender and slightly soupy (about 20 minutes).

In a small saute pan, heat 3 to 4 Tablespoons olive oil on medium heat, and add one clove garlic, thinly sliced lengthwise (don't mince or chop), and simmer until it just starts to brown.

Quickly add the garlic and oil mix to the lentils (enjoy the "Ka shhsh!") and serve immediately -- with crusty bread, fluffy rice . . . or just a spoon.


Jocelyn said...

I'm always looking for one pot meals like this. This may go on my list. It also reminds me that I must make Mujadarrah soon! Another lentil dish that is very simple, just onions and lentils, but so delicious and rich with caramelization.

phillip said...

looks yummy!

Jocelyn said...

I made this last night! Delicious and simple. We love it!

Penny said...

Prepared your pink lentil recipe last night and served with roasted acorn squash and steamed cabbage with sauteed chestnuts. So good! But my 10-year-old son voted the lentils his favorite item on the plate.