Hearty Lentil Stew

Thursday, November 29, 2012

I have a love-hate relationship with lentils. I want to love them all the time, but some recipes that include them are just unbearable. My digestive system definitely hates lentils (oh boy)--a little bean-o, however, goes a long way in that department! 

I've been spoiled since my discovery of red lentils, which have a milder, less...'lentil-y' taste (this soup is the bomb). But I don't want to give up on humble old brown lentils. They are so inexpensive and good for you, and can really be made in so many different ways. For me, lentils are delicious when they are put with the right ingredients, and this recipe was a huge success at making the lentils shine. A little shredded sharp cheddar cheese on top makes the stew even more delicious. It's amazingly filling, and super healthy. Just don't forget to take a bean-o or two if your guts hate lentils like my guts do. ;)

Hearty Lentil Stew 

1 T. olive oil
4 celery stalks, finely chopped
1 small onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 1/2 cups cooked brown lentils
1 c. canned crushed tomatoes
3 c. low sodium V-8 juice
1 (1/2 lb) bunch kale, tough stems removed and leaves roughly chopped
salt, freshly ground black pepper

First cook your lentils and set them aside. You can use two 15 oz cans of lentils, drained and rinsed, if you prefer. If using dried, 1 1/3 c. dried will make about 3.5 c. cooked. Here's a handy site to help with conversions like that.

Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add celery, onion, and garlic; cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally (do not brown).

Add lentils, tomatoes, juice, and kale; stir to combine and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to low, cover, and cook 15 to 20 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Easy White Chicken Chili

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

This is my current favorite chicken chili. The lime and cilantro add the perfect tang, while the hominy makes each bite chewy and fulfilling. And to think, for the longest time I thought I hated hominy! This stuff is amazing! Crushed tortilla chips and sharp cheddar cheese on top of the soup gives it an extra bang, but I think it's delicious with no toppings. YUMMY yum!

Easy White Chicken Chili

1 T. canola oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 (16 oz) can golden hominy, drained
1 (16 oz) can great northern beans, rinsed and drained
1 (14 oz) can low-sodium chicken broth 
1 1/2 c. diced cooked chicken breast
1/4 c. lime juice
2 T. chopped cilantro
1/4 t. cumin
1/4 t. ground black pepper

shredded cheese, crumbled tortilla chips

Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat; add onion and cook for 3 minutes. Stir in hominy, beans, broth, chicken, lime juice, cilantro, cumin and pepper. Increase heat, cover and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Top with cheese and serve with salsa, chips and more cilantro, if desired.

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