I’ve said many times already that if I could eat only one type of cuisine for the rest of my life it would most likely be Mediterranean! The flavors are so delicious, and there are so many vegan friendly dishes. Simple, inexpensive ingredients—rice, onions, and lentils—are cooked to bring out the fullest flavors, and make a hearty main dish. I fell in love with this dish when my foodie friend Myra made this for a potluck dinner party. While there are many variations on this dish, the recipe she and I like best is from Herbivoracious. I’ve made just a couple of small tweaks.
3 medium-large yellow onions, sliced relatively thin
2 T olive oil
1 c French lentils (brown or green will be great too, but don’t use red!)
2 c brown rice (I use a wild rice mix by Lundberg Farms with quinoa)
1/2 t ground cinnamon
1/2 t ground cumin
salt and pepper
flat leaf parsley for serving
Heat olive oil in large pan, and sautee sliced onions. It will look like a HUGE mound of onions, and it is, but they cook down and caramelize and you will want every last one! I usually let them sautee for up to 45 minutes—while you want them to have a little bite left, you don’t want them to turn to mush. As they sauté, you might want to add a ¼ c of water a few times to scrape up all of the brown bits. After they have cooked for about 30 minutes, add the cinnamon, cumin, and salt and pepper to the onions.
In a separate pot, at the same time, cook lentils until slightly past al dente, don’t let them get too soft.
In a third pot, prepare the rice according to package directions, remembering to salt it.
Once all three elements are cooked, combine well into one dish (I like to cook my rice in a large pot and add the onions and lentils into it. Taste and adjust seasoning, adding more cinnamon or cumin if you like, as well as salt and pepper. Add fresh parsley and mix again, or use it for garnish once served. I served this last night as part of a Mediterranean dinner with hummus (with a roasted Serrano mixed in for extra kick!), my husband’s fiery onion harissa (I promise, I will post that recipe!), and a fresh salad of tomatoes, kalmatas, and cucumbers. Delicious, filling, and so healthy!