Thursday, October 31, 2013

Lentil Challenge - More-with-Less Cookbook

I began the Lentil Challenge with some new recipes. A number of the recipes that I found online had Indian spice. I knew that I needed to add some variety so that we didn't get tired of variations and different recipes for the same thing that included curry powder and ginger.

The More-With-Less Cookbook came to the rescue. This is one of the essential cookbooks that I have and keep. There are a number of family favorites in that book. If you have not seen the More-With-Less Cookbook, this is a collection of recipes from various cooks with the idea that we need to be good stewards of the earth and to be eating less but getting more nutrition while saving money. I remember my mom using this book when I was growing up. I think this was one of the first cookbooks that I purchased. Mine is spiral bound and I think it is even a metal spiral. Mine is currently in a box but a friend here loaned me her copy.

From the More-For-Less Cookbook I made Basic Cooked Lentils. There are three variations for basic lentils. I decided to make the Easy Lentil Stew. Of course, as my usual cooking style, I am some adjustments to the recipe. I added the tomato paste and stirred it and thought it looked a bit like someone just dumped ketchup in the pan with the lentils and that made me want to run from the kitchen. I am not a ketchup person. I don't put it on my hot dog, I don't put it on my hamburger, I definitely don't put it on my scrambled eggs. Sometimes but not every time I put it on my French fries. A can of diced tomatoes saved the day, it gave some texture and a reason for the lentils to be red.

1 cup lentils
2 1/2 cup water
2 beef bouillon cubes
1 bay leaf
1 tsp salt
Bring to a boil and simmer 20 minutes
Add to the lentils:
1/2 lb diced ham, browned sausage or browned ground beef (I did not add that much meat)
3/4 cup tomato paste (I added 1 small can)
2 cups water
1/4 tsp oregano
1 tsp salt (I don't know that I added this again)
1 onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced (knowing me I probably added 3 or 4)
Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer 20-30 minutes until vegetables are tender. Serve plain or over rice. I served over rice with some Parmesan cheese.

The other variations include Curried lentils and Sweet-Sour Lentils.

An old lentil standby at our house is the Lentil-Barley Stew. The recipe says you can use barley or brown rice. I love barley so I always use barley.

There is one more lentil recipe in the More-For-Less Cookbook that I want to make, Kusherie (Egyptian Rice and Lentils). I remember my mom making this when we were growing up. I think I will make it as part of our Middle East Geography study.

Do you have a favorite recipe from the More-For-Less Cookbook?

Here are the links for the other Lentil Challenge recipes.
The Lentil Challenge
Lentils and Rice Taco Style
Lentil Soup

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  1. I'll have to look for a used copy of that cookbook on Amazon. Thank you for the ideas!

    1. Christine, I think you will enjoy that book especially as you are cooking more and more from scratch.



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