Lentils – Main Dish

I was going to make a soup but then I had this idea based on a recipe I saw. We are all cooking so much that creative is needed. Fred was skeptical until he scarfed down the entire dish. He should know better.

This could easily be a side but we had it was a main. It can also be vegetarian which I might not next time but I had a hankering for a kick of chorizo. Regardless, it is a win.

  • 4-6 Japanese Sweet Potatoes ( you can use any but I prefer these )
  • 2 large carrots – chopped into small pieces
  • 2 shallots thinly sliced
  • 4 long thin red peppers sliced – or just 2 regular sized
  • 1 cup lentils
  • 8 tbsp rice vinegar
  • scallions
  • 4 tbsp. maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp. soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp. white miso
  • 2 tsp. sesame oil
  • red pepper flakes
  • olive oil
  • smoked chorizo – as much or as little as you want

Roast the sweet potatoes at 425 until soft. About an hour. Let them cool and then pull them into 2″ pieces. I also pulled off the skin when they cooled.

Cook lentils in a pot of boiling water for about 20-30 minutes. I used 2 cups of chicken broth and 2-3 cups of water. I’d use vegetable broth for more flavor if you go vegetarian. When the lentils are soft, drain and set aside.

In a large sauce pan, cover the bottom with olive oil. Saute the shallots until browned, then add in the carrots, red peppers, kosher salt for seasoning and red pepper flakes (the spicier you like is depends on how many you toss in). Once this is done, about 5-7 minutes, put in a bowl and set aside.

Using the same pan, put in pieces of chorizo and saute until crispy. Set aside.

Take the scallions and cut into 3″ lengths. Slice down into match-like sticks. Put in cold water.

Whisk together 4 tbsp. rice wine vinegar, the maple syrup, soy sauce, miso, sesame oil and a pinch or more of red pepper flakes. Set aside.

Take the saute pan and clean it out with a paper towel. Put it back on the stove at medium/high and line with olive oil. Saute the sweet potatoes caramelizing the bottoms. It takes a few minutes to get them browned on each side. Don’t be impatient and scrape before they brown or they will get mushy. Add the glaze once they are done, fyi, the pan will splatter a bit. Let this soak in the sweet potatoes and use a spoon to baste until it gets thick. About a minutes or so. Once they are done, set aside.

Put the lentils in a bowl and toss with 4 tbsp. rice vinegar and 8 tbsp. olive oil and salt. Let this sit for about 10 minutes. Then add the carrot mixture and chorizo and toss. Set aside.

Put the lentils on a serving tray, place the sweet potatoes on top and then scatter the scallions over that. Voila. Serve with a green salad.