Off the top of my head, I can think of at least 8 reasons why you should include lentils in your weekly diet. They’re high in protein, fiber and iron, while being low in fat and calories. They’re delicious and add a pleasant crunchy texture to any dish. And they’re cheap. You just can’t get more bang for your bucks.
I first discovered this recipe about a month ago, thanks to Alison’s Lunch. I follow several food blogs for inspiration, but when I stumbled upon Alison’s, I knew it would make it to my top 5. Cooking with an emphasis on local produce, Alison dishes up mouth-watering vegetarian recipes. I was hooked. I’ve since made this recipe twice, and enjoyed it on toast, over quinoa, millet, and now with a side of garlic sautéed spinach.
- 3/4 cup French green lentils
- 1 cup diced onions
- 1 cup diced carrots
- 1 cup diced celery
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tsp olive oil
- 1 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 1/2 cup dry red wine (I used Pinot Noir)
- 1 1/2 cup water
- 1 tsp dijon mustard
- 1 tsp sea salt
- Ground pepper
- Fresh chopped parsley
Partially cook the lentils for 5 minutes in boiling water. Drain and set aside.
Meanwhile, heat olive oil in saucepan, and sauté the vegetables for a few minutes. Add garlic and tomato paste and stir well. Add the wine, water, mustard, lentils and salt. Simmer, covered, for 30-40 minutes, and notice the wonderful aroma it brings to your home. To serve, sprinkle freshly ground black pepper and garnish with chopped parsley.
Garlic Sautéed Spinach
- 1/2 pound of fresh spinach, rinced
- 2 tsp olive oil
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- Sea salt & ground pepper
In large pot, heat olive oil and sauté the garlic for a minute, over medium heat. Add the spinach and a pinch of salt and pepper, and toss with the garlic and olive oil. Cover the pot and cook for 2 minutes.
Enjoy as a quick and healthy side dish with a sprinkle of sea salt, and a squeeze of lemon juice, if desired. Recipe adapted from the Barefoot Contessa.
P.S: I’m always amazed at how much spinach shrinks when it cooks, so please note that this recipe will only serve about two!