We were in the mood for something new last night. As I am standing in my pantry and staring at the content, a box of lentils was just sitting there for the picking. Why not? Last time we had lentils was on New Years Day as a traditional Italian dish.
We also wanted fish. Below recipe was inspired by Gourmet cook book blended with old favorite family recipe. Love the caramelized onions, love them.
As I took my first bite of lentils I felt something was missing. I decided to try to sprinkle a bit of lemon juice with a drop of olive oil over the lentils, and the dish took a different dimension. The sweet gentle flavor of the onions was intensified.
We have left over and I cannot wait to have the left overs for lunch today. Maybe I will add some fresh tomatoes….
A nice glass of Chardonnay was a perfect pairing.
TIP: I am partial to green du Puy Lentils because, for me, I found them to cook best and not become to starchy. Make sure however that the lentils are rinsed well and picked over carefully.
Tonight’s April 16, 2012 dinner:
Sautéed Salmon with Lentils
SAUTEED SALMON WITH LENTILS
1 cup French du Puy Lentils, picked over and rinsed
3 cups of water
1 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
2 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 cup finely chopped onion
2 large garlic cloves, chopped
3 tablespoons chopped flat leaf parsley
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon olive oil
4 6 ounces salmon fillet, skinned
Salt and pepper
1 tablespoon butter
Garnish: olive oil, chopped parsley (optional), lemon juice and lemon wedge
Place lentils, water and 1 teaspoon salt in a saucepan and stir. Bring to a boil, and then reduce the heat to simmer 30 to 40 minutes, or until the lentils are tender but not falling apart. Drain in a sieve set over a bowl and reserve ½ cup of the cooking liquid.
Meanwhile in a heavy sauce pan, melt 2 tablespoon of butter over low heat. Stir in the onion, garlic, salt and cook covered until the onions are pale golden, about 10 minutes. Stir occasionally. Remove the lid and cook stirring occasionally for another 5 to 10 minutes, or until the onions are golden.
Stir the lentils into the onion along with the reserved cooking liquid and heat through. Add the lemon juice, parsley, 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice. Pepper and olive oil. Stir gently to bind it all.
Pat dry the salmon and sprinkle with salt and pepper. In a large skillet over medium-high heat, heat 1 tablespoon butter and olive 1 tablespoon olive oil. When the butter foam subsides add the fish and cook, turning once. 5 to 8 minutes depending on the thickness of the salmon. Make sure that it is not too overcooked or it will be too dry.
When ready to eat sprinkle a couple of drops or olive oil and a small squeeze of lemon in top of the lentils. This will accentuate the flavor of the caramelized onions.