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Entries in lentils (4)

Saturday
Nov122016

#CookforSyria: Bashar's Mugadara

One of the most striking things about Bashar is how warm, generous and overwhelmingly positive he is. Without probing – and you do have to probe – you would never know the trauma that he has been through.

Perhaps it is not remarkable; all of the Syrian refugees I met when I visited Calais were equally warm and welcoming. It was their generosity that really struck me though; these people who had so little were so keen to show us hospitality. It was their way of thanking us for the bags of food we brought and the odd jobs my friends did around their makeshift homes.

Khairun Dhala, who runs the Marhabtayn Syrian Supper Club, tells me that “Syrians are very hospitable people”. One of the aims of their supper club is to show people that and “counter the image of refugees being scroungers or just wanting to take benefits.” It’s a friendly space where people can feel welcome, enjoy a good meal and learn a bit about Syrian food and culture.

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Saturday
Feb212015

Ezogelin çorbası

Red lentil and bulgur soup with dried mint and Aleppo pepper

This soup was the first course in the five course meal my sister and I helped cook at Cooking Alaturka in Istanbul. It sounds plain, but it is hearty, wholesome and delicious. The people at Cooking Alaturka say:

This heartwarming soup, named after the bride Ezo, is so delicious and simple to make that you will want to make it all the time! You can use a chicken stock, but we prefer it with plain water, so that the other flavors come through more clearly. Don’t forget to squeeze a little lemon juice into it at the table. 

They also advise that there are pros and cons to serving it straight away versus leaving it overnight. If you serve it on the day it has a nice granular texture from the bulgar. However, the flavour is better the next day.

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Tuesday
Mar012011

Cheaper by the oven's sausage, lentil and bacon stew

Updated on Wednesday, February 26, 2014 at 10:16PM by Registered CommenterVix

My fridge is almost completely empty. There are still plenty of jars of things, but nothing fresh other than milk. My cupboards are full of grains, pulse and spices and the freezer is stocked with various meats, but I usually like a bit of green with my red and brown so I am not even trying to be inspired to make a meal out of it.

Monday is usually shopping night, but I had a bit too much to drink over the weekend and was feeling lazy and tired. I also spent too much money, which paired with the big bills this month means I am on a bit of a budget.

In my lethargic state I spent the evening trawling the 100s of blogs in my Google reader drooling over dishes I had no intention of cooking or hope of eating any time in the near future... until I got to Cheaper by the oven.  

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Sunday
Oct312010

Pan-fried plaice fillets with chunky salsa verde, puy lentils and garlic croutons

I tried out this dish for the first time the other night and it was fan-f**king-tastic. Wow! I would say this is the closest I have got to perfection for a while.

I thought it would be nice to follow up the salsa verde post with a dish that uses it, albeit not quite in its pure form. I would like to take full credit for the recipe, but I have a vague recollection of eating something like it at The Giaconda Dining Room last year. I was plied with several glasses of albarino (albarino, albarino) at the time, hence the hazy memory, but there are a few details which I remember clearly; white fish, lots of herbs, capers and croutons. The croutons were the key to the dish, giving it a wonderfully dynamic texture and providing a perfect contrast to the delicate flesh of the fish.

I have used this as the basic premise and taken it a step further by replacing the simple mix of herbs and capers with a roughly chopped salsa verde and I think it works, well, fan-f**king-tastically. The lentils I added for substance and because they go well with parsley. I found their earthiness well balanced with the tart, citrusy dressing.

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