Saturday, November 13, 2010

Pasta, Lentils, and Artichoke Hearts

I added this to the meal plan for the week, and as today came closer, I started regretting it. Lentils? With artichokes? And pasta? It just started sounding bland and icky. But Moosewood and I have a good relationship, so I figured I'd go ahead and make it.

And you know what? It wasn't icky. It was actually pretty good. I'm not goign to lie - it smelled horrid. The artichokes and lentils did not smell awesome. But with the cumin and the feta cheese and the tomatoes, it all came together. I wouldn't make it again, but we both did like it.


Pasta, Lentils, and Artichoke Hearts
Moosewood Low-Fat Favorites

1 cup dry red lentils (3 cups cooked)
1 bay leaf
3 cups water
1 tsp olive oil
2 cups diced onions
2 large garlic cloves, pressed or minced
2 tsps ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
2 cups canned tomatoes (18oz can), chopped and liquid reserved
1 1/2 cups quartered artichokes (9oz package frozen or 15oz can)
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
1 lb farfalle, rotini, or spirali
salt & pepper to taste
crumbled feta cheese (optional)

Bring the lentils, bay leaf, and water to a boil in a saucepan. Lower the heat, cover, and simmer for 15 to 20 mintues, until the lentils are tender.

While the lentils cook, heat the olive oil in a separate pan. Add the onions and saute on medium heat for about 5 minutes, until golden. Add the garlic, cumin, and coriander and cook for 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Add the lemon juice, tomatoes, artichoke hearts, and crushed pepper and simmer on low heat for about 10 minutes. Drain the cooked lentils, reserving the cooking liquid, and add the lentils to the tomatoe and artichoke heart mixture. Simmer for 10 minutes or more, adding about 1/2 cup of the reserved liquid if the sauce seems dry.

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a boil and cook the pasta until al dente. Drain the pasta and transfer it to a serving bowl. Top it with the lentil and artichoke heart sauce, add salt and pepper to taste, sprinkle with feta cheese, if desired, and serve immediately.

Yield: 4-6 servings

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