I've been on a bit of a lentils kick and I'm afraid I will turn into a life-sized lentil by the time I complete this blog post (I am shoveling lentils in my mouth as I write this). I love how you can make a nutritious meal for a whole week in a couple hours in one pot. And the best part is, a hearty portion ends up costing about $1.
I'm always chasing after umami in a dish, so here's my recipe for Umami Lentils.
1-1/2 cups lentils
6 cups dashi
15 shiitake, chopped
3 onions, chopped
6 cloves of garlic, sliced
4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
3 tbsp shio koji
2 tbsp Prime Rib roast seasoning (we love Grand Lake Shake from Oaktown Spice Shop)
2 tbsp Japanese Curry Powder from Umami Mart
1 bay leaf
1 tsp fresh thyme, chopped
1 tsp fresh rosemary leaves, chopped
1. Soak lentils in dashi for 2 hours.
2. Chop garlic and onions.
3. Chop the shiitake.
4. Gather all of your spices.
5. Put oil into a large stock pot (preferably a heavy one like All-Clad or Le Creuset). Set the heat on high and wait until the oil gets hot.
6. Add the garlic and saute for 3 minutes.
7. Add the onions and stir occasionally until they turn light brown and start to smell sweet (about 5-7 minutes).
8. Add the shiitake and saute for about 5-10 minute. Add the spices.
9. Add the soaking lentils with the dashi into the the stockpot. Add shio koji. Mix well.
10. Turn the heat down to the low setting so the lentils are simmering. Let simmer for 60 minutes.
Check the consistency and flavor by tasting the lentils. If they needs more flavor, add a teaspoon or two more of shio koji. Simmer for another 30 minutes. When they are done, they look like this:
Lentils are a new discovery for me so I am afraid I might overdose on them out of excitement – especially with this much umami packed in one dish. Go ahead and try this dish, but I'm warning you that you might O.D. along with me.