Friday, November 12, 2010

Umbrian Lentil Stew with Olive Oil Fried Eggs

Umbrian Lentil Stew with Olive Oil Fried Eggs

This fall in Los Angeles has been all over the place. I personally think we're being punished for having a not very hot summer. We have had some of the hottest days of the year in the last month or so. It's not so fun to cook on those days, but there are the days that cool down and make me want to get in the kitchen. When I saw this recipe, I knew I had to make it ASAP. It's very similar to something I made last year, but I couldn't pass up a chance to try this version. The cooking method is very similar to risotto.  I love the instructions in the original recipe to "cook the lentils until they are tender and suspended in a creamy sauce". Sounds magical, huh? I wanted this to have some substance so I kept the vegetable amounts the same, but reduced the amount of lentils. Instead of pulverizing the vegetables in the food processor, I just chopped them pretty finely by hand. The drizzle of balsamic vinegar was a sweet and tart compliment to the savoriness of the lentils and vegetables. A hint of spice would have been pleasant, but it's certainly not necessary and the leftovers were even better. This is a great dish for not just dinner, but brunch or lunch as well! Do yourself a favor and serve it with some crusty bread to soak up any of the juices.

Umbrian Lentil Stew with Olive Oil Fried Eggs
(Adapted from Food and Wine, March 2009)

Makes 2 servings

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for frying
1 ounce thinly sliced prosciutto, chopped
1 small  carrot, finely chopped
1 small celery rib, finely chopped
1/2 small onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
3/4 teaspoon tomato paste
1/2 cup plus two tablespoons green lentils
2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 large eggs
Handful of arugula leaves
Parmesan cheese and balsamic vinegar for serving

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over low heat. Add the prosciutto and cook until the fat has rendered.

Add the carrot, celery, onion, and garlic to the pan and turn the heat up to medium. Cook for about 7 minutes or until the vegetables have softened. Add the tomato paste and stir over medium-high heat until it coats the vegetables and is shiny, about 1 minute.

Add the lentils and 1 1/4 cup of the broth and bring to a boil. Simmer over low heat, stirring occasionally until most of the broth has been absorbed, about 25 minutes. Add another 1/2 cup of the broth and continue to simmer until it has absorbed. Add the remaining 1/4 cup of broth until the lentils are tender and the sauce has become a bit creamy, about 10 more minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Heat a bit of olive oil in a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Crack the eggs into the skillet, season with salt and cook until the edges are golden and the whites have set, but the yolks are still runny.

Spoon the lentils onto a plate and top with the eggs and a sprinkle of arugula. Grate cheese over the eggs and drizzle with balsamic vinegar.

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Erica said...

YUM! I am on sort of an egg kick right now- I've been eating them with everything.This is a great complete dish too- veggies & protein with carby bread for dipping! I love it

Diana said...

I love lentil soups and this looks delicious.
I'm jealous of all your warm weather, it is snowing in Colorado!

Joanne said...

I loovee lentils and especially love topping random stews, etc. with fried eggs. This sounds like such a delicious lunch!

vanillasugarblog said...

you know looking at the pic i thought it was lentil hash. but if that's done right doesn't it sound good?
your eggs are always cooked perfectly. takes me a few trys for the perfect egg

Kristen - Dine & Dish said...

What an interesting stew. I love the egg on top. Looks great!

Unknown said...

magical, indeed! DELICIOUS, too, now i'm craving some lentils :)

marla {Family Fresh Cooking} said...

"suspended in a creamy sauce" I like it, love it actually. Lentils are awesome & you show them off very elegantly & tastefully in this dish :)

shaz said...

Brilliant! I just found a packet og lentils in the pantry, I know what's for dinner. Thanks! :)

Diana said...

I think I'd like to be suspended in a creamy sauce...

The Duo Dishes said...

This fall has been, to say the least. To that end, we could've made ice cream one week and stew the next. Love the fried egg on top. The best part is slicing into the egg and letting it run all over everything.

Alicia Foodycat said...

Lentils and eggs are one of my favourite combinations! This looks wonderful for any time of year.

test it comm said...

That lentil stew looks both tasty and healthy!