Spicy Lentils

Serves 4


‣ 2 Tbsp grapeseed oil

‣ 1 white onion, diced

‣ 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

‣ 1 cup dried French lentils, (lentilles du Puy), rinsed and drained

‣ 2 – 1 inch chunks of fresh ginger, peeled

‣ 1 – 2 serrano peppers, split down the centre, seeds removed

‣ 4 cups chicken stock, preferably homemade

‣ salt to taste

‣ 2  Tbsp fresh lemon or lime juice

‣ ½ cup crème fraiche, preferably homemade*

‣ 4 Tbsp unsalted butter

‣ 2 medium carrots, peeled and finely diced

‣ 1 bunch of cilantro, chopped




Heat the oil in a medium saucepan and sauté the onion until it is transparent.  Stir in the garlic and sauté briefly, about for one minute.  Add the lentils, ginger, serrano pepper(s), and chicken stock. (The stock should cover the lentils by about one inch.)  Simmer for 30 minutes.  Remove from the pot and discard the ginger and serrano pepper(s).  Continue cooking until the lentils are tender but still have a good bite to them and retain their shape (approximately 15 minutes longer).


While the lentils are cooking, melt 2 Tbsp of butter in a small pan and cook the diced carrots on low heat, with a generous pinch of salt, under cover, until just cooked.  The carrots should be firm but soft enough to pierce easily with the tip of a knife.  (The smaller the dice, the faster the carrots will cook.)   Recheck the seasoning and add more salt if necessary.  Set aside until the lentils are cooked.


When the lentils are ready, adjust the seasoning with a few generous pinches of salt.  Stir in the crème fraiche and the remaining 2 Tbsp of butter.  Adjust the seasoning with additional salt, lemon juice and crème fraiche if desired.


Just before serving, stir in a generous handful of chopped cilantro.  Garnish with the cooked carrots and additional cilantro.


* To make your own crème fraiche, stir 3 Tbsp of buttermilk into 1 cup of 35% whipping cream. Cover with plastic wrap and leave at room temperature for 24 – 48 hours, or until thickened. This mixture can be stored in the refrigerator for up to one week.

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