Sunday, October 19, 2014

(Freekeh) Red Lentil Mujadara: Recipe 2

Freekeh Red Lentil Mujadara
 I envisioned this post would be about warming foods in cooler fall temperatures.  In fact, there were cooler fall temperatures when I made this a few weeks ago in late September.  Back then, all I could think about was how I was suddenly cold all time time, how good Honeycrisp apples are, when the leaves were going to explode, and as always, what I would have for dinner.  Every day, guys.  Every. Day.  But then, we seemed to have a resurgence of late summer weather, and despite thinking about what I wanted to eat for dinner every day, all day, it just seemed weird to suggest  a warming, cozy dish when turning your fan back on or false starting on breaking out your fall-weight sweaters and jackets, even if the colors in New England are exploding this year (dinner thoughts: what else can I put hummus on?).  It also seems like great timing as I spent some quality time with good friends in New Hampshire last weekend, hiking, cooking, and country fairing it up as we generally enjoyed New England at its best.  Bonus pictures of adorable baby oxen/steer/cows at the bottom of the post.  Can you tell I'm from the 'burbs?
Is there anything as good as Medjool dates, besides a giant bowl of Medjool dates?
Trick question: you already knew the answer was no. 
This apple, guys.  
Today seems like an appropriate day for to finally post this, though.  It's cool and overcast in Boston, there are leaves everywhere (which may or may not be a player in the creation of a sprained ankle that appeared early on Friday morning...other contenders include a crack in the sidewalk, clumsiness, badweekitis...all in all, should make the half I'm running in four weeks really, really easy, right?), and it is October, after all.  Anyways, enjoy this warming Middle Eastern inspired dish.  I tried it with Freekeh, because I like to say it and also: Halloween! Freaks! Works, right?  But: traditionally it's made with bulgur, and I think I might make it with farro next time (because it is the bestest).  It's simple, relatively quick, and filling.  It goes well with fall, friendship, and viewings of Outlander (omg omg omg you guys, it's actually GOOD.  SQUEE.  Also: phew!).  

(Freekeh) Red Lentil Mujadara
Serves 4-6
Freekeh Red Lentil Mujadara

2 cloves garlic, minced
2 onions, halved and sliced
2-3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 cup fresh parsley, chopped
¾ cup freekeh*
½ cup white wine
1 ½ tsp cumin
½ tsp allspice
½ tsp ground cinnamon (or 1 stick)
¼ tsp cayenne
1 bay leaf
4-5 cups broth (vegetable, chicken, etc.)
1 cup red lentils
1 bunch swiss chard, chopped


  1. In a Dutch oven/Le Creuset over medium high, saute garlic and onion until browned, 5-10 minutes.  
  2. Remove half of the mix and set aside in a bowl with your freshly chopped parsley.
  3. Add freekeh and saute roughly 1-2 minutes, and then add wine to deglaze the pot.
  4. Add cumin, allspice, cinnamon, and cayenne; saute 1-2 minutes.
  5. Add the bay leaf and 4 cups broth to the pot, bring to a simmer, cover, and let cook 20-25 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  6. Add lentils to the pot, stir to incorporate, and let cook 20-25 more minutes.  You may need to add more broth and should stir occasionally to prevent burning on the bottom.  
  7. When the lentils and grains are mostly tender (roughly 45-50 minutes from the start), add chard to the top of the pot, but do not stir.  Cover the pot and let steam 5 minutes.  
  8. Stir in the chard, and season with salt and pepper to taste.  
  9. Serve hot, with a side green salad, some lemon, some Greek yogurt, etc.  And definitely a huge glass of dry red wine!  

Bonus New England Fall pics:

Oregon. Trail. Fantasy. 
I would like to give this sign a best-in-show blue ribbon.  
Second place!
Well played, 4-H Kids. 
How now brun coo?
You seem to have soiled yourself.
Teen Goat Show
Lil' Sebastina?
Sorry, everywhere else.  You're just not as pretty in the fall.
Case closed.

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