telesilla: 1950s woman in kitchen (cooking)
[personal profile] telesilla posting in [community profile] iron_chef_csa
So there was a cabbage in the box this week. I've got a recipe for cabbage and beans that we really liked, but I don't have any beans. However, I do have lentils and so I went looking for a cabbage and lentil recipe and found this recipe. I messed with it some, adding bacon for flavor (which can totally be left out if you want to make this vegetarian) and a can of diced tomatoes because I liked the tomatoes in my cabbage and beans recipe. I took the chili out because a) we don't like chilies and b) I don't have any. I also didn't have a bay leaf, which is sad. *puts on list*

The result is very tasty. Cooking the cabbage in advance like this deals with the bitterness and the bacon adds a really nice smokey flavor. I can tell that it's going to be even better tomorrow. Even though it's late May here in the Sacramento Valley, it's been very cool and so this is perfect food for the weather.

Cabbage and Lentil Stew

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 medium onion, half of it chopped, half sliced

3 garlic cloves, minced

1/2 pound lentils (brown, green, or beluga), rinsed and picked over

3 1/2 cups water (more as needed)

1 large can diced tomatoes and their juice

6 slices thick bacon, chopped

Salt to taste

6 ounces waxy potatoes, scrubbed and sliced about 1/2 inch thick

1 1/2 pounds green cabbage (1 medium head), cored and cut crosswise in 3/4-inch wide ribbons

Freshly grated Parmesan for serving (optional)

1. Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a 3-quart saucepan or casserole over medium heat. Add the chopped half of the onion and cook, stirring often, until tender, about 5 minutes. Add 2 of the garlic cloves and cook, stirring, until fragrant, 30 seconds to a minute. Add the lentils, water, tomatoes, and bacon (and a splash of dry red or white wine if you like) and bring to a simmer. Reduce the heat, cover and simmer over low heat for 15 minutes. Add 1 teaspoon salt and the potatoes and continue to simmer gently for 30 minutes, until the lentils and potatoes are tender. Add more salt and freshly ground pepper to taste.

2. While the lentils are simmering, cook the cabbage with the remaining onion and garlic in a wide lidded skillet. Heat the remaining tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat and add the sliced onion. Cook, stirring often, until tender, about 5 minutes. Add 1/2 teaspoon salt and the garlic and stir together until the garlic is fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the cabbage and turn the heat to medium-high. Cook, stirring, until the cabbage begins to wilt. Add 1/4 cup water, turn the heat down to medium, cover and simmer 10 minutes, or until the cabbage is tender and sweet, stirring from time to time. Add salt and freshly ground pepper to taste.

3. Spread the cabbage over the bottom of the pan in an even layer. Top with the lentils and potatoes. Sprinkle on the parsley, and serve in wide soup bowls. Sprinkle with Parmesan if desired. [[You can't really do this with my version, unless your pan is huge. I just put the cabbage in with the lentils and even then I had to go to a larger pot.]]

Quick and Easy Pickled Beets

A while back I made cucumber sunomono. I was thinking about it as I looked at the beets in yesterday's box. I used to love pickled beets as a kid and I thought, why not try making beet sunomono?

2 parts rice wine vinegar -- 1/2 cup
1 part sugar -- 1/4 cup
dash of salt
3 small beets

Wrap the beets in foil and roast them in a 350°F oven for roughly an hour, or until a fork pierces them easily. Let them cool and then peel them and slice them. While the beets are cooling, stir the sugar and salt in the vinegar until they dissolve. Put the beets into the vinegar/sugar mixture in a glass or ceramic bowl and put in the fridge for at least 2 hours.

The result is sooo much better than the pickled beets from the can. I'm trying very hard not to just eat them all up.


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