Later On

A blog written for those whose interests more or less match mine.

Lentils WW Style

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This recipe is an adaptation of a recipe “Lentils Monastery Style” from Diet for a Small Planet. I made two changes:

  1. The original recipe used 2 tablespoons grated Swiss cheese in each serving to supply protein (and complete the protein in the pulse), but Swiss cheese is 4 Weight Watcher points per ounce. So I substituted poached chicken breast, also a good protein and 0 WW points. Most recently I also added 4 oz lean cooked ham cut into chunks (2 WW points total)
  2. The original recipe used 1/4 cup olive oil (16 WW points), and I used 2 tablespoons (8 WW points). You certainly could use 1/4 cup if you have the room in your points budget.

If you’re not trying to lose weight, the original is very tasty. Here’s my WW version, and everything is zero WW points unless otherwise indicated:

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil (8 WW points)
4-6 anchovy fillets, chopped small (optional, but adds umami with no fish taste)
2 large onions, chopped
3/4 cup chopped celery
1 carrot, diced
6-8 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tbsp thyme
1 Tbsp marjoram (but see Spicy Variant below)
3 CUPS stock or seasoned water
1 CUP dried lentils
salt to taste
1-1.5 Tbsp freshly ground pepper
1 bunch chopped Italian parsley (I have to admit I often omit this)
1 14-oz can diced tomatoes
1 Parmesan rind if you have it; the rind, along with the anchovies, bumps up the umami
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce (also contributes to umami)

At the end, add:
1/4 cup sherry (Amontillado, Solera, or Cream) or Shaoxing wine (4 WW points either way)
1-1.5 cups chopped poached chicken breast (see this post for the best way to poach chicken breasts)

Mince garlic and let it sit for 15 minutes before sautéing it.

Heat oil and sauté anchovy, onions, garlic, celery, and carrot for 5 minutes. Add thyme and marjoram and sauté 1 minute more. Add all but sherry (and poached chicken if using). (Whole Foods usually has Parmesan rinds for sale; I buy a plastic box of them and keep them in the freezer for when I make soup.) When the dish is cooked, fish out and discard the Parmesan rind.

Bring to boil, reduce heat to simmer, and cook covered until lentils are tender, about 45 minutes. Then add sherry (or Shaoxing wine) and chicken (if using) and remove from heat, waiting to serve until the chick is warmed through.

If you’re not using chicken, put 2 Tbs of grated cheese in each serving bowl and top with soup.

The emphasis on CUPS of stock or water is because once I absentmindedly used quarts of water instead of cups: very thin soup. And the emphasis on a CUP of lentils is because once I absentmindedly used a whole 1-lb package of lentils instead of just a cup: very thick soup.

The amount of pepper I use makes it spicy, and though The Wife is sensitive to “spicy” from (say) crushed red pepper flakes, the “spicy” from ground black pepper doesn’t bother her. I use this grinder to grind pepper for recipes: it’s quick and easy.

I add the chicken breast at the end so that it doesn’t overcook.

Each 1-cup serving counts as 2 WW points.

Spicy variant

Omit majoram, and add:

1 Tbsp ground cumin
1 Tbsp curry powder (I use sweet curry powder)
good pinch crushed red pepper flakes
1-2 cups chopped kale and/or collards
juice of a lemon

Increase liquid by 1/2 or 1 cup. I also added a couple of pieces of kombu (a seaweed), to be removed after cooking.

Written by Leisureguy

24 January 2018 at 8:46 am

Posted in Food, Recipes

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