Saturday, February 5, 2011

Beans 'n Greens, Indian Style

Let us not forget that the lowly lentil is in fact in the legume family. This Indian inspired version of beans and greens is a nice change of pace. When I make this again, I will consider doubling the spices for an even more intensely flavored dish. That earthy, lentil flavor needs to be overpowered with fragrant spices. The dollop of yogurt that finishes the dish adds a cool, creaminess making this ideal for a light lunch or dinner.

Lentils and Chard with Mushrooms

1 bunch swiss chard, stemmed and chopped
1/2 cup green lentils, rinsed
4 oz shitake mushrooms, stemmed and sliced
1 clove of garlic, minced
1/4 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp ground coriander
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
1/4 tsp turmeric

In a small pot cover the lentils with 2 1/2 cups of water, salt, and bring to a boil. Once at a rolling boil, lower the heat and cover, simmering for about 30 minutes or until tender. Meanwhile, heat some olive oil and add the mushrooms. Season with salt and cook until tender. Move the mushrooms to the outer rim of the pan and add some more oil and the garlic. Add the spices and stir 30 seconds. Add the chard and mix everything to combine. Cook another 2 minutes until wilted. Add the lentils and some of the cooking water (about 1/4 cup) to the pan. Simmer until all the flavors come together. Serve with yogurt.

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