This hearty lentil stew is perfect for these last few of the year or you can wait and make it as a traditional New Years dish. It’s hearty and satisfying with warm, earthy flavors, drizzled with a bit of olive oil and a splash of balsamic vinegar for balance. A high protein vegan dish.
All around the world, lentils and legumes are traditionally eaten to ring in the New Year, in hopes of wealth and prosperity for the year ahead. Lentils green color and seed like appearance resembles coins that swell when cooked so they are consumed with financial rewards in mind.
In Italy it’s customary to eat cotechino con lenticchie or sausages and green lentils, just after midnight. Germans also partner legumes and pork, usually lentils with sausage. In Brazil, the first meal of the New Year is usually lentil soup or lentils and rice.
Cooked greens, including cabbage, collards, kale, and chard, are consumed at New Year’s in different countries for a simple reason — their green leaves look like folded money, and are thus symbolic of economic fortune.
The Danish eat stewed kale sprinkled with sugar and cinnamon.
In the southern United States, collards are the green of choice. It’s widely believed that the more greens one eats the larger one’s fortune next year.
This is an easy one pot dish of root vegetables with celery, carrots, onions and kale (or other hearty greens) simmered in vegetable or chicken broth with nutty French lentils.
The ingredients sound simple and peasant like and that’s because they are. These plain ingredients are slow simmered to perfection with all the classic flavors to make a bowl of comforting lentils that are super yummy.
You can use olive oil if you’re vegan. Ghee is very good for your digestive system. Butter gives it a nice taste or if you like, bacon fat for a smoky taste.
I love lentils. They’re cheap, they’re easy to make, and they are considered a power food that is somehow a nutrition fountain of youth. Researchers who study the elderly found that eating these earthy-tasting lentils (and other legumes) is the single most important dietary factor in longevity. To me this is the best reason to eat lentils. Eat lentils and stay young!
If your digestive system is sensitive …. SOAK YOUR LENTILS.
- Pour the lentils into a large mixing bowl, cover with warm water by 2 inches, and stir in vinegar. Cover the bowl with a kitchen towel and leave in a warm spot in the kitchen for 8 to 12 hours. Drain the lentils and rinse well.
I use turnips, parsnips, celeriac and carrots for winter vegetables but you don’t have to use them all. Choose what’s available. Potatoes can be used instead of celeriac to make the stew a little heartier.
I add a chipotle chile to get a little smoky flavor. It doesn’t make it spicy, just flavorful.
If you like this dish you may also like these other one-pot dishes.
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This hearty lentil stew is thick and satisfying with warm, earthy flavors.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil, ghee or grass fed butter, or bacon fat would be good here if you like it
- 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
- 2 stalks celery, chopped
- 1 cup French green lentils
- 5 cups chicken broth or vegetable broth
- 1 chipotle chili pepper
- 1 bay leaf
- 4 sprigs fresh thyme or 1 teaspoon dried
- 1 celeriac or potato peeled and chopped into 1/2” dice, about ¾ pound*
- 1 turnip, peeled and chopped into 1/2” dice
- 3/4 pound carrots, peeled and chopped into 1/2 “ dice (4 carrots)
- 1/2 pound parsnips, peeled and chopped into 1/2-inch dice (3 parsnips)
- 1 teaspoon Celtic sea salt
- 1 bunch hearty greens trimmed and sliced very thin (kale, mustard greens, collards), about 5 cups
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- extra virgin olive oil, to serve
- Balsamic vinegar, to serve
- Heat the olive oil, ghee or other fat in a heavy-bottomed stock pot over medium heat. Add onions and celery, cook until fragrant and translucent, 5 minutes, stirring frequently to prevent burning.
- Stir in lentils, chicken stock, chipotle pepper, bay leaf and thyme. Simmer, uncovered, for 15-20 minutes until lentils are beginning to get tender.
- Stir in celeriac, turnips, carrots, and parsnips. Sprinkle the vegetables with salt, cover the pot, and simmer for 15-20 minutes, more stirring occasionally until vegetables are just cooked.
- Turn off the heat, and stir in the greens. Cover and allow the greens to wilt in the residual heat of the lentils for about 5 minutes.
- Add apple cider vinegar.
- Taste to adjust salt.
- Serve with olive oil and balsamic vinegar.
If your digestive system is sensitive… SOAK YOU LENTILS. Pour the lentils into a large mixing bowl, cover with warm water by 2 inches, and stir in vinegar. Cover the bowl with a kitchen towel and leave in a warm spot in the kitchen for 8 to 12 hours. Drain the lentils and rinse well.
If using potatoes choose red potatoes or gold potatoes.
- Prep Time: 30 mins
- Cook Time: 30 mins
- Category: Main Dish
- Method: Simmer
- Cuisine: Seasonal, Paleo, Vegan, Gluten Free
Keywords: lentil stew, vegetarian lentil stew
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