This dish of lentils has become something of a regular visitor to our dining table. It’s relatively easy and quick to make and gets eaten up. It’s a deep rich warming dish, great for a cold winter’s day. It goes well with roasted or grilled meats, but can be eaten as is on its own.
Splash of olive oil
One diced onion
Diced red pepper
Knob of butter
A tbsp of flour (I used gluten free flour)
Merchant Gourmet Puy Lentils
Dice the onion and the pepper.
Heat a large deep frying pan, once hot, add a splash of olive oil. Cook off the pancetta, then add the onion and red pepper, cook until softened. I then add some chopped mushrooms for flavour and colour. At this point you could add some other things. I have in the past used sliced baby courgettes.
If there is fat in the pan, then add the flour, otherwise add the knob of butter, in order to help create a roux and ensure that the sauce thickens.
Once the flour is incorporated into the mixture, add some stock. The choice is up to you, I actually quite like a deep beef stock, but vegetable stock works well too. Then add some tomato puree.
Depending on your taste, just add some ground black pepper (or even a little chilli for heat). The dish doesn’t need extra salt as the stock and pancetta have plenty for this dish.
Cook until the sauce has reduced.
Add the Puy Lentils. I use the Merchant Gourmet pack of puy lentils, which are already cooked and work well in this dish.
These tasty lentils have a delicate, slightly peppery flavour, and were grown in Le Puy-en-Velay, in France. They’ve been simply cooked with water, onion, bay leaf and a dash of olive oil, and are a fantastic base for summery salads.
Warm the lentils through thoroughly and serve.
Variations I have made include adding Polish sausage to the dish, or slow cooked belly of pork.
Another variation is to use Merchant Gourmet’s Tomatoey French Puy & Green Lentils.
These are Puy and Green Lentils, cooked in a rich sauce of sun-dried tomatoes and fresh basil with onion and garlic.
When using this pack I omit the tomato puree.