Curried Lentils

It was not too long ago where a small group of us went out to dinner in Milwaukee, at a great restaurant called Odd Duck. It was our first time eating there, and we were impressed from the first step into their door. This restaurant is known for small plates, tapa style, to be shared with the table.  I enjoy the concept because it allows everyone to sample a lot of dishes, something that would normally not occur at your standard restaurant. So based on their suggestions, we ordered about ten dishes among the four of us. The first dish, and I will not get into details on the other dishes as you can read those on my Yelp review, was a curried lentil served with a compote and flat bread. They were great, and so great that I decided to make my version the following week.

How to make curried lentils recipe

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb of lentils, soaked in water and picked through
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cup onion, rough chop
  • 1 large carrot, washed, ends trimmed, rough chop
  • 3 ribs of celery, rough chop
  • 5 cloves garlic, skin removed
  • 3 tbsp curry powder
  • 1/2 tbsp salt
  • 1 tsp cracked black pepper
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 6 cups of water, or stock, approximately

Start by picking through your lentils. Some times, but not all, you will find little stones or other artifacts. Remove those. Then strain the lentils.

Next, add the onion, carrot, celery, and garlic to a food processor. If you do not have one, simply chop all of those ingredients very finely. Pulse until they are finely chopped.

Get a large pot onto the stove on medium, to medium high heat. Add the olive oil, warming it through.

Scrape all of the vegetable mixture out and into the pot. Cook for about 5 minutes, sweating all of the vegetables.

After five minutes, add the curry powder, salt, and pepper, and give this a good stir. I’m a big fan of cooking the seasoning for a few minutes.

Curry Lentils Recipe

After a few minutes, add the strained lentils to the pot, and give them a good stir. Add in the lemon juice. Cook for a few more minutes, then add your stock or water.  Your goal is to add enough water to cover the lentils by a half inch or so. As the lentils cook, they will absorb the stock or water, so keep an eye on it as they cook, and add more stock if necessary. You are not making a soup, nor do you want them to completely absorb all of the liquid.

Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat, covering, and let simmer for about 1 hour, taking a peak 30 minutes into the cooking to adjust any liquid.

After an hour, taste the lentils and make sure they are nice and tender and that your liquid ratio is going well. If they are still a bit hard, cook longer. I like the lentils to be al dente, not mushy.

When you are ready to serve, you can either serve family style, or into smaller bowls. Garnish with fresh cilantro.

The end result is pure flavor. The warmth of the curry along with the mirepoix lends itself to a healthy, and nutritious side dish, or meal for that matter. Hope you enjoy.

Curried Lentils
Author: 
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12
 
Ingredients
  • 1 lb of lentils, soaked in water and picked through
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cup onion, rough chop
  • 1 large carrot, washed, ends trimmed, rough chop
  • 3 ribs of celery, rough chop
  • 5 cloves garlic, skin removed
  • 3 tbsp curry powder
  • ½ tbsp salt
  • 1 tsp cracked black pepper
  • ½ lemon, juiced
  • 6 cups of water, or stock, approximately
Instructions
  1. Start by picking through your lentils. Some times, but not all, you will find little stones or other artifacts. Remove those. Then strain the lentils.
  2. Next, add the onion, carrot, celery, and garlic to a food processor. If you do not have one, simply chop all of those ingredients very finely. Pulse until they are finely chopped.
  3. Get a large pot onto the stove on medium, to medium high heat. Add the olive oil, warming it through.
  4. Scrape all of the vegetable mixture out and into the pot. Cook for about 5 minutes, sweating all of the vegetables.
  5. After five minutes, add the curry powder, salt, and pepper, and give this a good stir. I'm a big fan of cooking the seasoning for a few minutes.
  6. After a few minutes, add the strained lentils to the pot, and give them a good stir. Add in the lemon juice. Cook for a few more minutes, then add your stock or water. Your goal is to add enough water to cover the lentils by a half inch or so. As the lentils cook, they will absorb the stock or water, so keep an eye on it as they cook, and add more stock if necessary. You are not making a soup, nor do you want them to completely absorb all of the liquid.
  7. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat, covering, and let simmer for about 1 hour, taking a peak 30 minutes into the cooking to adjust any liquid.
  8. After an hour, taste the lentils and make sure they are nice and tender and that your liquid ratio is going well. If they are still a bit hard, cook longer. I like the lentils to be al dente, not mushy.
  9. When you are ready to serve, you can either serve family style, or into smaller bowls. Garnish with fresh cilantro.

 

If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment or subscribing to the RSS feed to have future articles delivered to your feed reader.

2 thoughts on “Curried Lentils

  1. I love your recipes. I haven’t made one that didn’t turn out fabulous!
    My family isn’t a big fan of curry but we love lentils. Is there another spice that would work well in this recipe?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


*

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>