Monday, 18 April 2011

Roasted carrot and red lentil ragout

I was enticed into cooking this dish due to the description by its creater, (Molly O'Neil) as 'a colourful fusion of textures that appeals to all your senses before the first bite, and then it leaves you with a burst of flavours in your mouth'. How could I not try it after that description?

I don't know about a colourful fusion, it is more of a deep orange, but the end result was certainly surprising. Although there isn't alot of chili in here the ragout packs quiet a punch and leaves you wanting to go back for more. Initially I was going to serve this on it's own because it didn't seem right serving it with rice but I am glad that I did because there is so much flavour in this ragout that the blandness of rice makes the perfect accompaniment.

The best thing about this dish is that at no point does it even occur to you that there is no meat in it. The recipe doesn't pretend to substitute meat with anything, it is what it is and it stands on it's own. I urge you to try it.

  • 5 large carrots
  • olive oil
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 medium onion, sliced thin (mandolin)
  • 3/4 teaspoon  chili powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 cup red lentils
  • 5 cups chicken stock
  1. Preheat the oven to 220 degrees. Lay the carrots in a roasting pan and toss with olive oiloil. Season with 1 1/2 teaspoons salt and a few grinds of pepper. Roast for 20 minutes. Turn the carrots, add the onion and roast 25 minutes, until the carrots are brown and tender. Put the onion on top of the carrots so they don't burn. When carrots are cool enough, cut them in 1/4-inch dice.
  2. Warm some olive oil in a saucepan. Add the carrot-and-onion mixture, the chili powder and the cayenne pepper. Cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Stir in the lentils. Add the stock and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 20 to 25 minutes, until the lentils are falling apart. Season with remaining salt and pepper to taste. Serve with rice, or as a thick soup.

1 comment:

  1. This is not a joke: we bought an OXO Mandoline Slicer last weekend, which seems to be the most mentioned item in this blog other than salt an pepper. As soon as my fingers heal after trying it out yesterday, I will definitely attempt this recipe.