Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Madras Lentils

This recipe is intended to duplicate the Tasty Bits Madras Lentils available from Costco.

It is derived from a Madras Lentils recipe found at Recipes for Life.

Dale's Recipe:
2 cups cooked lentils
1 can diced or crushed tomatoes
1 can red beans, rinsed
1/2 onion, diced
2 large cloves of garlic
pinch of salt
1/8 cup olive or canola oil
1 tsp cumin powder
1 tsp chili powder
(2 T green chilies)
1/2 cup of water, as needed
1/4 cup cream substitute

Saute onion and garlic in some canola oil.

Add cumin and chili powder, stir it in with the onions and garlic for a couple minutes.

Added a can of dice tomatoes (not drained) and mashed thoroughly with a potato masher.

Lowered the heat and let it cook down for a bit.

Added cooked lentils (cooked from dry) and red beans (cooked from dry "small red beans") - no need to add water.

Add the salt, lowered the heat and let it cook down until it thickened.

Added just the smallest amount (mixed into each serving of a maybe half tsp) of plain fat free greek yogurt to give it a creamier texture.

Original recipe:
2 cups cooked lentils
1 can diced or crushed tomatoes
1 can red beans, rinsed
1/4 red onion, diced
1/4 cup cream substitute
pinch of salt
1/8 cup sunflower oil
1/2 tsp cumin powder
2 T chilies - green

1/2 cup of water

Recipes for Life directions:
Saute onion in sunflower oil until softened.

Add green chilies and cumin powder - stir for a couple of minutes until mixed well.

Add cooked lentils, tomatoes, beans and cream, and mix well.  Add water and salt and simmer for 10 minutes.

The aroma from this dish will bring them running to the table faster than a dinner bell!  Serve with warm tortillas or chips.  Garnish with cilantro and a slice of red onion.  Enjoy!

Combine these recipes and ingredients and begin experimenting:

Maren’s Vegetarian Lentil Chili
My aunt’s friend Maren is the perfect person to invite to a party. She loves to talk, makes a mean cocktail, always brings the best food, and she’s happy to share her recipes. I got a hold of her Vegetarian Lentil Chili recipe a few winters ago and it has since become a staple meal at our house. The addition of lime juice at the end brightens up the soup and ties all the flavors together. The recipe makes a lot, so I often dish it up as soup one day and then serve the leftovers (which thicken up in the fridge) with braised greens and roasted vegetables the next night.

You’ll need:
1 pound lentils, rinsed and drained
2 cups vegetable broth
3 cups water
1 Tablespoon olive oil
½ cup onion, finely chopped
1 can fire roasted tomatoes (or two cups stewed tomatoes)
1 can green chiles (or ½ cup chopped fire roasted chiles)
1 teaspoon chile powder
1 teaspoon cumin
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon cayenne
3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
2 teaspoons minced cilantro

Instructions:
Combine lentils, broth and water in a large pan. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 30 minutes partially covered.
Meanwhile, in a skillet heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic. Saute for 5 minutes. Then, add the tomatoes, chiles, chile powder, cumin, salt and cayenne. Simmer for 5 minutes.
Stir the tomato sauce into the lentils. Simmer 20 to 30 minutes more, or until the lentils are tender. Add a bit more water if the lentils become too thick. Stir in the lime juice and cilantro and adjust the seasonings just before serving.

Phil’s Vegetarian Lentil Chili
I was inspired to make this after reading Willi’s recipe at digginfood.com. I took her basic recipe and adjusted it to be more to my liking. I made sure to honor the spirit of it by keeping it vegetarian (at least one of the spirits). Next time I will try it using fresh vegetables that I fire roast myself, but it’s nice to know you can throw together ingredients from your pantry. The total cost for the entire pot of chili was under $5 for raw ingredients (spices were already on hand and some ingredients were organic, so cost a little more).

Ingredients:
1 pound lentils, rinsed and drained
2 cups vegetable broth
3 cups water
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1 cup onion, finely chopped (go ½ if you like less)
1 can (14.5 oz) fire roasted tomatoes (or two cups stewed tomatoes) finely diced
1 can (4 oz.) green chiles (or ½ cup chopped fire roasted chiles) finely diced
1 can (6 oz.) tomato paste (more or less depending on desired thickness)
1 tablespoon finely minced garlic
2 teaspoons chile powder (up to 4 tsp to taste)
2 teaspoons cumin (up to 4 tsp to taste)
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon course ground black pepper
½ teaspoon cayenne
5 dashes of chipotle tabasco (to taste)
1 tablespoon liquid smoke (for flavor and aroma)

Instructions:
Combine lentils, broth and water in a large pan. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 30 minutes partially covered. Watch closely for water level, add in small increments if needed to keep lentils in water while cooking.
Saute the onion and garlic in the olive oil for 5 minutes. Then, add the tomatoes, chiles, chile powder, cumin, salt, black pepper and cayenne. Simmer for 5 minutes.
Mix the lentils and onion/tomato/peppers mix. Add the tomato paste to desired thickness. Add the liquid smoke, and stir in. Taste. This is where I added more chili powder (+2 tsp) and cumin(+2 tsp) to kick it up a notch (BAM!). Add the chipotle tabasco to taste (for me that was 5 healthy dashes). Simmer 20 to 30 minutes more, or until the lentils are tender. Add a bit more water if the lentils become too thick.

Ingredients from the Tasty Bites Madras Lentils package
water
tomatoes
lentils
red beans
onions
cream
butter
salt
sunflower oil
chilies
cumin

2 comments:

  1. Hi dale,

    Thanks so much for your recipe. I'm excited, because I LOVE Tasty Bite's recipe! How large should the can of crushed tomatoes be? And the can of red beans?

    Thank you! I want to make this right!

    Michele

    ReplyDelete
  2. Also, how many servings should it make? Thanks again :)

    ReplyDelete