Mushroom-Lentil Bake with Egg

Don’t judge a book by its cover. Often we look at something, whether it be an object, place or relationship, and simply see it at surface level. We might see a worn book as tattered and not worthy of $10 instead of seeing it as a well-loved gem that many have read over and over again.

Last week I ate at a Vietnamese restaurant that had an outdated facade, but once I entered, I could tell it was a family-run place with authentic food, cooked with love. There was a long line of customers waiting to be seated, and while many might pass the restaurant since it doesn’t entice you in with this street-facing appearance, what really matters is how the food is cooked and tastes.

The mushroom-lentil bake recipe has similar qualities. From the outside, it looks like it’s simply mushrooms and lentils, but once you cut into it, you discover the egg hidden beneath the surface. More and more, I’ve been eating foods that look delicious from the outside, and then when I dig into the dish, there’s a pleasantly surprising ingredient inside. It’s a good reminder to not view things at surface value.

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Mushroom-Lentil Bake with Egg

Ingredients

> 1 cup green lentils
> 1 tablespoon olive oil
> 1 cup mushrooms, chopped (1/2 cup white button and 1/2 cup crimini)
> 2 carrots, chopped
>  1 onion, chopped
> 4 eggs
> salt and pepper

Instructions

Preheat oven to 370°F. Boil the lentils for 15 minutes, strain very well and place in a large bowl. Meanwhile, boil two eggs.

Heat olive oil in a large pan and saute mushrooms, carrots and onion for about 10 minutes. Place them in the large bowl with the lentils. Add two eggs, salt and pepper to bowl. Whisk together.

Place half of the mixture in a greased bread pan or other pan. Add the peeled boiled eggs and cover with the other half of the mixture.

Bake for 30-40 minutes, or until cooked through. Let cool before removing from pan.

Makes 3 servings.

Adapted from Gourmandelle.

 

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Portobello Mushroom Stuffed with Herbed Goat Cheese

Portobello mushrooms aren’t a crowd pleaser by any means. In fact, many people can’t think about choosing that over steak (often the two choices at formal events). But for those of us who prefer portobellos over a piece of meat, it’s refreshing to find a recipe that truly plays to a portobello mushrooms strengths and brings out all the right flavors and textures. This recipe, which features several components that pair well together, is simple in execution, yet complex in flavor.

Portobello Stuffed with Goat Cheese

Ingredients:

> 2 tablespoons walnuts
> 1/4 cup fresh parsley, leaves separated from stems
> 8 ounces goat cheese
> 1 clove garlic
> 1/2 cup artichoke hearts, canned in water
> 1/4 cup jarred roasted red pepper
> 1 tablespoon olive oil
> 4 portobello mushrooms
> salt and pepper
> 3 cups baby arugula
> 1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

Instructions:

Process the walnuts and parsley leaves in a food processor until finely chopped. Add the goat cheese and a dash of salt and pepper. Puree until smooth. Set aside.

Smash and mince the garlic. Finely chop the artichoke hearts and roasted red peppers. Heat olive oil in a medium saute pan and add garlic, artichoke hearts and red peppers. Saute for 5 minutes, stirring often.

Meanwhile, preheat oven to 375°F. Remove the stems from the mushrooms and brush each mushroom with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and place on baking sheet in oven. Roast about 15 minutes. Let the mushroom caps cool for about 5 minutes.

Place baby arugula and lemon juice in large mixing bowl and toss to combine.

Divide the goat cheese and walnut mixture among mushroom caps, spreading on the gill side of each mushroom. Top with a scoop of roasted red pepper and artichoke mixture. Finish with a handful of dressed arugula.

Makes 4 servings.

Adapted from Self.

Skillet Beans and Greens

Making a flavorful dinner can seem like a challenge when you have limited ingredients in your fridge and cupboard, but the right seasoning can make all the difference. The recipe below requires few main ingredients and several spices. It was originally created as an appetizer to top toasted bread, but it works just as well without the bread and as a main course or side dish.

Skillet Beans and Greens

Ingredients:

> 2 tablespoons olive oil
> 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
> 1 teaspoon chili powder
> 1 can black beans, drained
> 4 cups kale, bite-size pieces
> 1/2 cup water

Instructions:

Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat, and add garlic and chili powder. Cook for 30 seconds.

Add beans and cook, stirring occasionally, until they begin to blister, about 3 minutes. Using a spoon, lightly mash the beans until about half are mashed.

Add kale and water, and cook until kale is wilted, about 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

Makes 3 servings.

Adapted from Bon Appetit.