The oft-requested lentil recipe

January 17, 2021

On the occasion of my daughter turning thirty and emigrating to Australia, I’m finally writing this one down. It’s excellent with maple-roasted Delicata squash, fennel salad, and grilled fish. In a 3-quart saucepan, bring 1/2 pound de Puy, or small green lentils, and 4 bay leaves to a boil in about 4 cups water. Lower heat and simmer, uncovered, for 30 minutes, until lentils are just tender. You want to end up with about an extra inch of liquid on top, so add water during the cooking time as needed. Transfer the lentils and liquid to a 10″ skillet, discarding the bay leaves. Stir in 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, 4 tablespoons red wine vinegar, 1 teaspoon coriander powder (freshly ground from toasted coriander seeds makes a world of difference), 1 teaspoon kosher salt, and a pinch of cayenne powderSimmer the lentils over medium heat for at least 30 minutes, and up to 1 hour if you want a creamier texture, ladling in hot water much the way you add stock to risotto. For a more assertive flavor, stir in 1 extra tablespoon olive oil and 1 extra teaspoon red wine vinegar toward the end of your cooking time. Serves 2-4.

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