Here is a quick recipe to pass the time. We found a version in a cookbook or magazine that starts with a nice set of ingredients. So we decided to make it one night.
You start with around a pound, or 2 cups, of French green lentils. Clean them as you need to.
You also collect the following:
2 or 3 stalks of celery, cut up. The recipe said to “roughly chop” the celery. What they mean by this is to dice it small. You know. Slice the stalk in half lengthwise… twice if you need to. Then turn it and cut it into little cubes. Rough little cubes.
4 or 5 small carrots, cut up the same way.
1 large onion or two medium ones. Cut these the same as the celery.
A few pieces of prosciutto, pancetta, sausage or bacon. The recipe calls for 4 to 6oz. What they mean by this is 4oz of the ham and at least the same amount of sausage, in little pieces. If using bacon, fry it up and save the fat. Or just use bacon fat here and add sausage later (see note below).
Salt, pepper, thyme, bay leaves, and so on.
At this point, the recipe says to put the lentils, meat, vegetables and herbs into a pot, add enough water to cover and then some, and then cook it for 45min or something.
What they mean is that you should sauté the vegetables in olive oil and salt and pepper until they get soft. Then add the meat and sauté some more. Then add the lentils and stir them around. Now add water, chicken stock and white wine to the pot until you have a bit of liquid above the solids. Then add the herbs and more salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a boil, then turn the heat down and simmer for as long as you need to to get the lentils soft.
If you have all your stuff together and well organized it should take you 20min to get everything in the pot. Then you can write a short web page about what you did.
When the lentils are soft, serve over rice (what else) or whatever you like.
Note: For a bonus, make this recipe then cut up some cooked Italian sausage and throw it in at the end. Then it’s perfect.
This recipe was originally at my old blog here: http://www.tleaves.com/weblog/archives/000516.html