Lens Culinaris
September 5, 2010 4:00 PM   Subscribe

Aside from your standard red lentils and rice and your not-so-standard Turkish red lentil bride's soup, what other delicious red lentil recipes do you have for me to try? All recipes welcome-- I eat everything. Thanks in advance!
posted by oflinkey to Food & Drink (29 answers total) 73 users marked this as a favorite
Daal Chaawal. I have made it over and over again - it's really good!

An easy recipe from Salon is here:

posted by infodiva at 4:07 PM on September 5, 2010

Ethiopian Red Lentil Stew
posted by Morrigan at 4:24 PM on September 5, 2010 [2 favorites]

I've tried a few different Indian red lentil dishes, but this version of spiced lentils with cucumber yogurt from Yotam Ottolenghi is my favourite to date.
posted by AnnaRat at 4:29 PM on September 5, 2010

I had a wonderful lentil soup recently. It had carrot and onion, plus lentils and spices. Cook the lentils until they are pretty soft, then puree all of the ingredients and serve.
posted by cmgonzalez at 4:36 PM on September 5, 2010 [1 favorite]

Armenian red lentil soup with apricots - recipe is half way down the page here. Theris another recipe here if you dont have a pressure cooker.
posted by scodger at 4:39 PM on September 5, 2010 [3 favorites]

Good curried red lentil and carrot recipe that can be made quickly in the microwave at Cooks.com. You can also add other veggies to it (like cauliflower), serve it over rice with a dollop of yogurt on top and it's yummy.
posted by garnetgirl at 4:41 PM on September 5, 2010

Daal Makhani
Best. Dish. Ever.
posted by spikeleemajortomdickandharryconnickjrmints at 4:45 PM on September 5, 2010

I imagine you could make lentilburgers with red lentils. About 2 cups cooked and drained lentils, 14 crushed soda crackers (or the equivalent breadcrumbs), an egg, salt and pepper, finely chopped onion and maybe a little tomato juice, mix together, make patties and fry.
posted by St. Alia of the Bunnies at 4:46 PM on September 5, 2010

Lentils are really good in spaghetti sauce.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 5:01 PM on September 5, 2010

I found this via Metafilter awhile ago. My variation includes a couple chicken breasts and is served over rice. Delicious.
posted by beandip at 5:35 PM on September 5, 2010

I make what I just call Daal. It's from a few different recipes half forgotten, and then half remembered.

Diced onions, fried a lot. Between 1 and a lot of onions.
red Lentils. 1-2 cups
Stock. About 1 litre. I use salt-reduced usually
Water after you've used up all the stock
Spices - about 1-2 teaspoons of
garam masala,
cardamon seeds (or pods if you can't find seeds)
Chilli flakes/powder/whatever. Fresh works too but I usually don't have any
Salt, Pepper

Boil until ready. Can take a while, and needs regularly stiring so it doesn't burn. I usually am doing something else in the kitchen while doing it.

You really can just wing it, even if you don't usually. You can't go wrong, it will just turn out different every time you make it.

it makes a lot. I eat it with rice, and it freezes well for taking to work.
posted by antiquark at 5:38 PM on September 5, 2010

Khoresht ghaimeh! I know the recipe says split peas, but my boyfriend's mom uses split black lentils to excellent results. (Also, Iranian food is friggin fantastic.)
posted by phunniemee at 5:44 PM on September 5, 2010 [1 favorite]

I posted my favorite easy but incredibly tasty red lentils w/ greens soup recipe to a thread a while ago. Mmmmm.
posted by charmedimsure at 6:00 PM on September 5, 2010

I have a non-veg lentil stew that I like to make with sweet potatoes and smoked sausage. I've never tried making it with strictly red lentils, but I have made it with a mixture of red lentils and some run of the mill grey lentils. It's a hearty, comforting dish.

You'll need: two to three cups lentils, a large yellow onion, white mushrooms, about two to three cloves garlic, a smoked sausage (either kielbasa or smoked beef sausage), three medium sweet potatoes, two cups chicken or vegetable stock, a pat of butter, two to three tablespoons flour, a can of crushed tomatoes, chili powder, cayenne pepper, black pepper, cumin, curry powder(optional) corn starch (optional) The spices are all to taste, really. I adjust them every time I make the dish.

Basically you cook and drain about two to three cups of the lentils (more lentils=a thicker stew) and set them aside, then you slice up and brown about half a smoked sausage in a dutch oven. Once the sausage slices are nice and browned you remove them and set them aside to drain on some paper towels, reserving the drippings in the dutch oven. (If you don't have a dutch oven, you can use a large heavy bottomed sauce pot.)

Dice up a large yellow onion, a couple cloves of garlic and quarter some mushrooms. Make sure your burner is on medium and add a pat of butter to the drippings in the dutch oven. Once it has melted, add the onion, garlic and mushrooms.

Once the onions are translucent and starting to brown a little, and the mushrooms are done, add two to three tablespoons of flour. Stir it in very well, making sure to coat everything evenly. Then add two cups chicken stock, stir very well and bring to a gentle boil.

Then add your spices. I use a healthy amount of chili powder, black pepper, some cayenne pepper, plenty of cumin, and occasionally some madras curry powder. Turn the burner down to medium low and let it all simmer and thicken. (If your mixture is not thickening well, then mix a couple teaspoons cornstarch into a small amount of cold water and add to the pot.)

While your mixture is thickening, peel and dice about 3 medium sized sweet potatoes, and steam them. Set them aside for a moment.

Add half a large can of crushed tomatoes and your steamed sweet potatoes to your thickened mixture in the dutch oven and let simmer for about 15 minutes before adding your lentils.

Once the lentils have been added, let everything simmer for 10-15 minutes longer, then add your smoked sausage. Salt to taste, adjust spices, then you're done.
posted by Half-a-Dozen Paper Cranes at 6:09 PM on September 5, 2010 [1 favorite]

You mentioned the bride's soup, but there's a more standard lentil soup served just about everywhere in Turkey, especially for breakfast. You could google a recipe easily enough, but basically just soften onion & carrot in butter, add lentils & stock, cook until lentils soften, season & puree. You can add a little cumin as well.

Here's what pushes this soup over the edge into awesomeness: when serving, sprinkle dried mint on top, and squeeze in some lemon. Bonus points for eating with fluffy white Vienna bread, as they do in Turkey.
posted by UbuRoivas at 6:23 PM on September 5, 2010

dal makhani is a delight but it uses black lentils But on that note, check out the recipes at tarladalal.com
posted by kmennie at 6:58 PM on September 5, 2010

You may find a wider variety of Ethiopian results if you look for misir (or mesir) wat, which is one of the more common sorts of Ethiopian dishes involving red lentils.
posted by ubersturm at 7:01 PM on September 5, 2010

Had a truly amazing lentil & sausage soup many years ago...while we're on that subject, does anyone know the recipe?
posted by Ys at 7:22 PM on September 5, 2010

The recipe for Spicy Red Lentil Chilli Soup from Wegmans is to die for. Your friends and family will love you for ever, after serving this soup ...
posted by Susurration at 9:04 PM on September 5, 2010 [1 favorite]

i make a red lentil salad that makes people freak out at dinner parties.

you need:
dried red lentils
dried cranberries
toasted almonds (i toast the raw almonds myself, but probably pre-roasted ones would be okay)
stuff for a vinaigrette (I use sesame oil (which makes it taste special), apple cider vinegar, salt N pepa -- but you can use whatever.)

soak some dried red lentils in water for a few hours (let's say around 3 hours, give or take an hour or two)
chop up lots of cilantro
chop up the almonds and toast them in a dry skillet on medium heat till they're browned

drain the lentils, rinse them a few times, then add all the ingredients together. pour your dressing over it, and let it sit for a bit (at least an hour) so the dressing can soak in.

really good as leftovers. if it can last that long.
posted by andreapandrea at 9:11 PM on September 5, 2010 [6 favorites]

Don't know if this is too close to your Turkish bride's soup as I've never had that, but the Dean and Deluca cookbook has a recipe for Middle Eastern Red Lentil Soup with Yogurt and Lemon. Here's what seems like that version online.

Also, not sure this would work but Deborah Madison has a dish that includes red beans in a walnut sauce that is very tasty. Perhaps that walnut sauce would work with silky deep red lentils too?
posted by ifjuly at 9:32 PM on September 5, 2010

I make lentil loaf using cooked red lentils plus whatever else I happen to have on hand. It's great with courgette or sweet potato, plus herbs and spices and tomato paste and an egg and some flour and/or breadcrumbs to hold it together. There's plenty of recipes online but I prefer to make it up as I go along.

Also, did you know you can prepare red lentils in the microwave by covering with water and nuking on full power for 10 minutes? Changed my life when I found this out.
posted by hazyjane at 11:14 PM on September 5, 2010

I enjoyed this red lentil soup from 101 cookbooks.
posted by kms at 12:40 AM on September 6, 2010

Another carrot and red lentil soup recipe, but I really like that the carrot in this is grated, so it's the kinda soup you can chew as well as slurp. And the lemon and parsley make it lovely and fresh tasting. From Donna Hay's "The Instant Cook":

2 tsp vegetable oil
1 finely chopped onion
2 tsp ground cumin
1 cup red lentils, rinsed
4 cups chicken or veg stock
3 cups boiling water
3 carrots, peeled and grated
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons roughly chopped flat-leaf parsley
salt and cracked black pepper

Heat oil, onion and cumin over high heat for 2 min. Add lentils. stock and water, and cook covered for 5 min. Add carrots and cook covered for a further 4 min (or until carrots are tender). Stir through lemon juice, parsley and seasoning.
posted by celerity at 4:36 AM on September 6, 2010

Red lentils and water, cook until very soft, add salt. Eat as soup.

Every time I add something else, I'm disappointed.
posted by SandiBeech at 4:47 AM on September 6, 2010

Red Lentil Cake
posted by watercarrier at 4:51 AM on September 6, 2010

I make "refried lentils" for burritos and they are delicious, I've spiced them like you would normally do refried beans, and I've also used tandoori masal for a nice twist.
posted by glip at 8:14 AM on September 6, 2010

This healthy recipe from the NYTimes is delicious.
posted by O9scar at 8:42 AM on September 6, 2010 [1 favorite]

This recipe for Lebanese Lentils and Rice is similar to the way I learned to cook it from my ex-boyfriend's Palestinian mom. I serve it, like she did, with a mixture of chopped tomato, cuke, green onion, and green pepper on top (the recipe suggests topping with yogurt instead). It sounds so boring and simple, but the contrast of the hot, starchy lentils and rice with the cool, crisp vegetables on top is really addicting.
posted by WorkingMyWayHome at 11:05 PM on September 6, 2010

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