According to their package, the green lentils of Le Puy are "rich in fibre and minerals." They are also full of mildly peppery flavor and could not be easier to prepare. They are smaller than regular lentils and look almost black when cooked, so it's nice to add carrot for color. They are available at Dean & Deluca in Georgetown (202-342-2500) and through online gourmet purveyors.
Make Ahead: The lentils can be prepared and refrigerated a day in advance. To reheat, place in the microwave; heat on HIGH for 20-second increments until heated through.
- 1 cup dried le puy lentils (see headnote)
- 3 cups homemade or low-sodium chicken broth (may substitute water)
- 2 sprigs thyme
- 1 medium clove garlic
- 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 medium carrot, peeled and cut into small dice (about 1/2 cup)
Combine the lentils, broth, thyme, garlic, salt, pepper and bay leaf in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, then add the carrot, stirring to incorporate. Reduce the heat to medium (so the liquid barely bubbles), cover and cook, stirring occasionally, for 30 minutes, until most of the liquid is absorbed and the lentils and carrot are soft. Discard the thyme sprigs and bay leaf.
Reduce the heat to the lowest possible setting until ready to serve, or transfer to a container, cool completely and refrigerate for up to 1 day.
From columnist David Hagedorn.
Tested by David Hagedorn.
Email questions to the Food Section at firstname.lastname@example.org.