Friday, June 25, 2010

Ethiopian Lentil Stew

I decided to make a first try at using my Berbere.  Most of the recipes I found online have you cooking the lentils in stock and then adding veggies and spices.  While this is probably the most energy-efficient way of doing it, my hunch was that sauteeing the veggies and spices in oil first (like a curry) would yield slightly more flavorful results.  Leave it to the Post-Punk Kitchen to read my mind.  So, while I started off with this recipe from, I ended up drifting towards the (less authentic?) PPK version.  Besides the sauteeing, I also liked that they added tomato--this seems more like what I've been getting at restaurants.  It's really tasty, but it's not that pretty, and it's still missing something.

Someday I will make enjera.  Today is not that day.

Ethiopian Lentil Stew
(adapted from The Post-Punk Kitchen, among other places)

1.5-2 c brown lentils (I ran out of lentils and mixed in some mung beans)
3 cup vegetable stock / water, plus more as needed
several TB vegetable oil
1 large yellow onion, diced small
4 cloves garlic, miced
2 tablespoons fresh ginger, minced or grated
1 carrot, diced
1-1.5 TB berbere
1/4-1/2 c tomato paste
1 cup frozen green beans, thawed
salt and pepper to taste

1) Cook lentils in stock/water in a saucepan.
2) Heat oil in a cast-iron skillet.  Saute onion, garlic, ginger, carrot, and berbere for 5 minutes or so.  Stir in tomato paste and green beans, cook for a few minutes until everything is warmed through, then turn off heat.
3) When lentils are done, add them to skillet, warming over medium heat for several minutes until flavors have melded.  Add salt and pepper (or cayenne pepper) to taste.  Serves 4-6.

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