• 1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
Combine the lentils, carrots and 2 cups water in a large pot over high heat. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low; cover and cook until the lentils are tender, 30 to 40 minutes.
Meanwhile, pour the oil into a medium sauté pan over medium heat. Once the oil shimmers, add the onion and stir to coat; cook until translucent, 5 to 8 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the bell pepper and garlic, stirring to coat; cook until tender, 4 minutes. Transfer the mixture to a food processor.
Once the carrots and lentils are cooked, transfer the carrots from the pot to the food processor, along with the tomatoes or tomato purée, oregano, basil, crushed red pepper flakes and kale. Pulse until mostly smooth.
Add the quinoa and red wine to the pot of lentils, stirring to incorporate; cover and cook until the quinoa grains start to show their white tails, 6 or 7 minutes.
Stir the carrot-kale purée into the lentil-quinoa mixture; cook, covered, over low heat until the sauce melds and heats thoroughly, about 20 minutes. Season with the salt and pepper.
Serve hot, or cool completely before storing.
Nutrition information per serving:
Calories 230 Fat 5 g Sodium 180 mg
Carbohydrates 34 g Saturated fat 1 g Protein 11 g Cholesterol 0 mg Dietary fiber 11 g
Lentils and Mozzarella
Note: Creamy, fresh mozzarella pairs well with earthy lentils, sharpened with a vinaigrette, in this midwinter dish. Serve with bread as an appetizer or salad, or as a side dish, warm or at room temperature. Adapted from “Feast,” by Sarah Copeland.
• 2 tbsp. slivered almonds (or substitute pine nuts)
• 6 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, divided