Happy friday, lovelies. Exciting plans for the weekend? My plan is to relax and spring clean and relax a bit more. Maybe I’ll have a martini & wear some faux fur.
I just read an article in Scientific American about love. After finishing an exercise in which she stared into a man’s eyes for several minutes, a participant in an experiment teared up and exclaimed, “There was a whole world in those eyes.” It’s the most beautiful thing I’ve read lately. I think we’d all treat each other more gently and with more dignity if we kept that thought in mind. Her words made my heart pound in that lovely, powerful way that happens when something resonates with you.
In other news, the plantain purchase hasn’t totally distracted me from my recent obsession with French cooking. I bought French lentils today, also known as le Puy lentils, because I ate them last night at Cafe Presse, and frankly, I can’t stop thinking about them. [This new found love of le Puy lentils is akin to a crush. It's weird, I know.]
French lentils are smaller and less starchy than those common brown lentils also known as low life legumes (kidding!). They’re also high in soluble fiber, and they fight cholesterol! These delicious little legumes are good for you, and they’re better tasting than any lentil you’ve consumed before. This dish is best when served with a good bottle of red wine. Happy eating! xo, m
Braised Lentils with Winter Greens & a Fried Egg
Adapted from Serious Eats
3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1/2 cup French green lentils uncooked
1 bunch winter greens, such as kale, chard, collards, etc.
1 shallot, peeled and minced
1/2 cup red wine
1 clove garlic, chopped
1/8 teaspoon red chili flakes, or to taste
Splash of lemon juice or sherry vinegar
salt and black pepper
Optional: chanterelle or button mushrooms. Add 1/2 cup or so to the lentils when they’re almost done cooking. You will need to add slightly more wine accordingly.
In a medium saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil over medium heat. Add the shallot and saute until soft, 2-3 minutes. Add 1 cup water and the red wine, bring to a boil, and simmer, covered, until the lentils are tender but not mushy, 30 minutes or so. Add more water as necessary. Season to taste with salt.
In the meantime, wash the greens and slice the leaves away from the stems and roughly chop the leaves. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil, garlic, and chili flakes in a saucepan or large skillet until fragrant, then add the leaves along with 1/4 cup or so of water and a pinch of salt. Cover, turn the heat to medium-low, and allow the leaves to steam as the water evaporates, tasting for tenderness and adding more water as necessary. Finish with lemon juice or vinegar to taste, and perhaps more olive oil.
When the lentils and greens are almost done, heat the remaining oil in a small non-stick skillet and fry the eggs sunny-side-up, about 3 minutes over medium-low heat, until the whites are set but the yolk is still runny.
Serve the greens on a bed of lentils, topped with the egg and fresh black pepper. Serve with a side of steamed vegetables.