Thursday, March 30, 2006

Lentils with Ham and Rosemary

Continuing both my exploration of xxx and my rarely successful efforts to feed the family on Tuesdays when I go to a 6:00 prayer group, I tried this recipe. This was more of a "guideline" recipe for me. I did not follow many of their directions because I was too strapped for time to have the 2-1/2 - 3 hours required for the slow cooker.

It turned out great. Maybe this is because the authors adapted it from a Cooking Light recipe so I was taking it back in the direction it came from. Maybe it is because it is a very simple and adaptive recipe.

OR maybe it is because I am a kick ass cook who can bid ingredients to do her will. Hey. That's my story and I'm stickin' with it.

Anyway, it was greeted with almost universal approval, except from Tom who is just not a lentil-lovin' kinda guy. But he is good at rolling with the punches and I wasn't home when he ate.

Serves 8

Cooker: Medium or large round
Setting and Cook time: high for 2-1/2 to 3 hours

2 medium yellow onions, chopped (I used one white onion)
2 cups diced cooked ham (any kind)
1 cup diced carrot or parsnip
1 cup chopped celery (I didn't have any around)
2 cloves garlic, chopped
3/4 teaspoon dried rosemary, crushed (I didn't have either rosemary or sage ... so I used ... 1-1/2 t. poultry seasoning ... going for the sage ya know)
3/4 teaspoon rubbed sage
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 bay leaf
1 pound dried brown lentils, picked over and rinsed (I used those little French lentils, to see what they were like, and they held their shape really well)
One 14.5 ounce can beef broth (I used chicken broth because by then I was all about breaking the rules)
5 cups water, or as needed to cover everything by 3 inches

Combine all ingredients in the slow cooker. cover and cook on HIGH until lentils are tender, 2-1/2 to 3 hours. Add boiling water if you want soupier lentils. Discard bay leaf and serve.

Or if you want to do it the quick, stove top way, saute the onions, carrots and ham in some olive oil until the onions are fairly well cooked down. Then throw everything else in the pot, bring to a boil, lower heat to a simmer, cover the pot. Let simmer for about an hour. Taste and add salt as needed.


rita said...

did someone say crock pot? looks like I'm starting here! and yes, you are a kick ass cook.

Julie D. said...

Awwww, you know how to flatter a pal. :-)