Just as we do at home, we aim to keep the food in our blog balanced. This seems intentional, and to a certain point it is, but I’ve also noticed that over time I’ve unconsciously been avoiding repeating too many recipes of the same category.
After posting a few rice, meat and other type of recipes I return to two of my favorites: stews and legumes.
I love lentils, they are one of my confort foods. Try this vegan lentil stew recipe, and whether you are a vegan or not, you will love it. I am sure.
Sadly lentils are not as used in our cuisine as much as I wish they were. Not only are they a great source of protein, lentils are also very filling. A good lentil stew is a pleasure to the stomach and tastebuds.
For this stew I added thyme, another sadly underutilized ingredient in our cuisine. Thyme, uncommon as it is in some regions of our country, it is an essential part of legume and bean dishes in the northwestern region of the country, where it is known as “ditén”, a word of Haitian origin. Thyme to me tastes somewhere between aniseed and mint, a tickly flavor that cannot be found in another herb.
The onion and thyme definitely dominate the flavors in this stew, but the “smokiness” of the lentils is never overpowered. It seems like a very simple dish, but as confort food goes this cannot get any more complex.
- 2 cups of lentils
- 1 large red onion cut into eighths
- 1 sprig of fresh cilantro
- 4 sprigs of thyme
- 1 pepper chopped into squares
- 2 large potatoes, cut into cubes
- 2 tablespoon of olive oil
- ½ lb of auyama (West Indies pumpkin), cut into cubes
- ½ teaspoon of mashed garlic
- Soak the lentils in abundant water for at least two hours. Drain water.
- Boil lentils in clear water for 15 minutes over medium heat. Sieve the lentils until all the water has been drained. Reserve water and lentil.
- In a pot heat the oil, add the onion.
- Cook and stir until the onion becomes transparent.
- Add the potatoes, pumpkin, pepper, garlic, thyme and cilantro.
- Cook and stir for 2 minutes.
- Sautee at medium heat for 2 minutes.
- Add the lentils (without the water) and cook and stir for a minute.
- Add 4 cups of the water you had reserved, stir.
- Cover and simmer over low heat until all the ingredients are cooked through. Add more water as it becomes necessary (use clear water if you run out of water from boiling the lentils)
- Remove the sprigs.
- Season with salt to taste.
- Serve with arroz blanco.
Originally published Dec, 2007