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Fresh for Autumn: Hearty Lentil Stew | Sortachef

Fresh for Autumn: Hearty Lentil Stew

A favorite on our table, this tasty offering is vegetarian comfort food at its best!

Makes 10-12 servings

1 pound dry brown lentils

2 quarts cold water


12 ounces diced carrots

10 ounces chopped onion

2 Tablespoons olive or safflower oil

2 large cloves garlic, minced

½  teaspoon black pepper

1½  teaspoons dried basil

1 large or 2 small bay leaves


1-15 ounce can diced tomatoes

2 teaspoons salt

12 ounces potato, cut into ¾” cubes (optional)


  1. Put the lentils and water into a stockpot, uncovered, and set over medium heat.  Gently bring water to a simmer, which should take roughly half an hour depending on your stove.  It is essential that you bring the lentils to temperature slowly, or else they will burst. Once they’ve reached an active simmer, cover the lentils, turn off the burner and let them sit for 1 hour.
  2. In a large frying pan, sauté the carrots and onion in oil on medium-high heat for 10 minutes, turning and stirring regularly to keep the onions from burning. Turn the heat down to medium-low; add the garlic, basil, black pepper and bay leaf and sauté for another 10 minutes to meld the flavors.
  3. Bring the lentils back to temperature. Add the sautéed veggies and simmer for an hour over low heat with the lid propped open. Stir occasionally.
  4. After an hour, add tomatoes and salt and simmer the stew for another 30 minutes or for as long as several hours. This stew is happy sitting on the back burner until you’re ready to dive in. If desired, add potato for the last 30 minutes of cooking; stew is done when the potatoes are just cooked. If the stew gets too thick, add another ½ cup of hot water.
  5. Serve with crusty bread and a variety of cheeses for a hearty autumn feast!



 Copyright 2010 by Don Hogeland


For a printable version of this recipe in MSWord, click HERE

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At Woodfiredkitchen.com, Sortachef takes you on adventures in the kitchen and beyond, with tales to suit. Many of his offerings are woodfired - a flaming good recipe for pizza, bread, or something different. All recipes are original and tasty. Enjoy!
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