Red lentils are the fast-food of the legume world. This lentil stew takes only 20 minutes to make without pre-soaking, making it a great choice during the heat of summer or on any busy day. It reheats well, too, so make a double batch for an even faster meal the next day.
Make it a casual company-level meal by topping it with a spoonful of Light Summer Pesto from Fifty Weeks of Green. The stew is vegan, low-fat, and gluten free.
The picture above shows Summer Stew with bell pepper sticks and pieces of the heirloom Kellogg's Breakfast tomato.
Active time: 20 minutes. Total time: 20 minutes. Serves 2.
1 clove garlic
1/2 cup red lentils (3 ounces)
1 cup water
1 teaspoon olive oil
1/2 red or yellow onion
1 boiling potato, such as a Russet or Yukon Gold
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup green beans
2 tablespoons Light Summer Pesto, optional
- Mince garlic. Put sorted and rinsed red lentils in a bowl with 1 cup water to soak while you prepare other vegetables.
- In a medium pot, warm olive oil over medium low heat. Chop onion into 1/8th-inch pieces and cook with olive oil until translucent, about 3 minutes. Chop potato into 1/4-inch cubes and add to pot with lentils, water, and salt. Cover and bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat so stew barely boils.
- Cut green beans into bite-sized pieces and add to top of stew without stirring. This lets the green beans steam on top and keeps the lentils under water. Cover pot and simmer for 6 to 8 minutes, until lentils and potatoes are tender and beans are as tender as you like.
Serve hot or room temperature, topped with a spoonful of Southern Summer Pesto if desired. Refrigerate extra for up to four days. The potatoes will develop a mushy texture if frozen.
- For an Indian twist, skip the pesto, use two teaspoons corn oil instead of olive oil, and stir in a teaspoon or two of curry powder when heating the oil. Make your own curry mix by using a teaspoon of cumin, a 1/2 teaspoon of coriander, a 1/4 teaspoon of turmeric, and an 1/8 teaspoon of chipotle or cayenne.