Thursday, May 12, 2016

Warm Lentils with Mushrooms

Recipe from Martha Stewart’s Cooking School
Husband-Tested in Alice’s Kitchen

You can toss your old recipes for preparing lentils because this one is just downright scrumptious. It’s a nice side dish, but it’s a great vegetarian main meal along with a salad.  My vegetarian buddy, Janet, made this for a party recently and everyone begged for this recipe. It can be served either hot or at room temperature. (Make it a day in advance of a party and just reheat it when the guests arrive.)  Don’t be put off by the price of dried mushrooms.  Dried mushrooms really pack a flavorful punch; therefore, you’ll only need just a tiny bit, just two mushrooms for this recipe, so one package will go a long way

1 cup French lentils, picked over and rinsed
1 medium carrot, peeled and cut into small dice
1 bay leaf
3 sprigs of thyme (or 1 teaspoon dried thyme)
2 dried porcini mushrooms (I’ve also used other dried mushrooms like oyster mushrooms.)
2 teaspoons Kosher salt
3 cups water

3 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 Tablespoon unsalted butter (use olive oil if making this a vegan dish)
2 cups cremini mushrooms, sliced
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
1 medium shallot, minced (You can substitute ½ a sweet yellow onion.)
1 clove garlic, minced

2 Tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
3 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 Tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh flat leaf parsley

Combine lentils, carrot, bay leaf, thyme, porcini, salt and the water in a saucepan and bring to a boil.  Reduce to a simmer and cook, partially covered, until the lentils are tender, about 35-40 minutes.  Drain. Discard the herbs, porcini, and liquid.  Set aside.

Meanwhile, heat a large skillet over high heat until hot, then add 2 Tablespoons oil and the butter and swirl until the butter is melted.  Add cremini mushrooms and season lightly with salt and pepper.  Sauté until mushrooms are golden brown and their juices have evaporated, about 5 minutes.  Add shallot and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally until the shallot is translucent, about 2 minutes.  Place the mushroom mixture in a serving dish and set aside. 

Pour the vinegar into the skillet and boil, scraping up and brown bits from the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon, 10 seconds (do not allow the liquid to reduce.)  Whisk in mustard, 1 teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Whisking constantly, add oil in a slow steady stream until emulsified. Add the lentils to the skillet and toss until coated.  Put the lentil mixture into the mushroom mixture, add the parsley and gently toss to combine. Serve warm or at room temperature.

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