Yes you read that correctly... Yuengling red lentils! It's lentil time and it's definitely brew time, so I thought I'd merge the two and tip my hat to America's oldest brewery! (but really I just only had Yuengling in the fridge and wanted that extra something
in the lentils) ;)
If lentils aren't a familiar face around your kitchen, I'm gonna suggest to you that they should be. And you know what? Life's too short to turn your nose up to something just because your mother never made it or because you think
you know what it'll taste like even though you've never actually TRIED them yourself.... hitting home to anybody? ;) Let me tell you why these babies need to become part of your repertoire:
- lentils hold a huge amount of vitamin B6 and folate, therefore hugely decreasing the risk of breast cancer for those who eat them!
- lentils give your body a serious boost of energy due to their ridiculous iron levels.
- ONE CUP of lentils contains 17.9 grams of protein and 15.6 grams of fiber, which is 62% of your daily fiber recommended intake! WIN!
- lentils, especially red, take all of 12 minutes to prepare and take to a WHOLE lot of different preparation styles and flavors. they're an easy canvas.
Have I convinced you yet? :) Yes? Good. Let's get going then. (ps this was for two people)
Place your lentils in a bowl. Rinse thoroughly! I don't have a sieve with small enough holes so I rinsed this way. Just had to do it a couple of times.
aren't they so pretty? i love when the food itself inspires you to cook.
Mince two cloves of garlic and mix it in with the clean lentils. Let sit while you start your onions and marinate the fish.
Yes, we're gonna caramelize some onions today because there's nothing better in life. Also they'll taste great with AND add some fun texture to the lentils. Drizzle some olive oil in your skillet and sprinkle in red pepper, chili powder and seasoned salt.
Being cautious, finely slice half an onion and toss into your medium- low heated pan.
Turn the heat down a little and let these babies get caramely brown. I let mine cook on a very low heat, stirring occasionally for about 40 minutes. Ridiculous, I know. But they're SO GOOD that way. In the meantime, grab whatever herbs you've got... we used lots of fresh basil, parsley and oregano. Melt some butter in a cup or bowl (a fair amount, this is a marinade) and toss in the fresh herbs while it's still sizzling hot. The butter will really take on the flavors of the herbs this way.
see the sizzling bubbles? that's a good sign.
Now let's slice a lime in half and squeeze half the juice into the hot herb butter mix. Save the squeezed half, you'll use it in a minute.
Let's check on the onions. Go ahead and give them a little stir around.
Now place your cod in a baking dish that's deep enough to hold some marinade and pour the herb butter mixture all over the top. Instead of letting the fresh herbs go down the sides, go ahead and place them all over the tops of the filets, and push some into the little slits and holes if there are any. Then squeeze the other half of the lime juice all over and leave both squeezed lime halves on each filet. Drizzle the tops with a little olive oil and sprinkle with lots of fresh cracked pepper and a little sea salt. Set aside to marinate.
Back to the onions! They should be getting pretty soft and golden by now, so let's turn the heat way down to low and pile them up in one spot in the skillet. This is when they'll get nice and caramely.
these show the caramelization happening probably every 5 minutes...
once they look like candy heaven, they're about done. ;)
You can leave those in the skillet on a very low heat for a long time and they'll be fine so let's leave them. Dice up one roma tomato and place in the same skillet and let them cook for a few minutes, just to soften them a bit.
Now for the lentils! This is the part that smells the best... you will totally die. Warm up a little olive oil in a pan that will fit the lentils and some liquid. Toss the lentils in and coat in the olive oil. If you're ridiculous like me, you'll need to melt your frozen homemade chicken broth in a separate pot.
When your broth is melted, pour it in with the lentils on a simmering medium- low heat. I used about 1 & 1/2 cups broth. Now, crack open a Yuengling, or whatever other type of beer you have for that matter and pour in about 1/4 cup. Season with cracked black pepper, a little sea salt, chili powder and red pepper, and put the lid on for 12 minutes.
Your nose will start to smell things that are too tempting to NOT smell... so you'll want to lift the lid of that pan after about 6 minutes of cooking and smell the deliciousness. Then go ahead and remove yourself from the kitchen for those last 6 minutes, otherwise it won't cook properly. ;) Turn your grill to 350 degrees and get it nice and warm. Lay out foil and wrap the fish very loosely, creating a big cocoon for the fish to get a little smokey in. Pour the marinade all over each piece and grill for 10 minutes in the foil.
While the fish is grilling, grate a little sharp white cheddar cheese and open the lid of your gorgeous lentils. Toss a pad of butter in there and pour in a little more Yuengling and stir. Then add in your onions, tomatoes and the cheddar. Salt and pepper to taste from that point.
Your fish should be finished so let's plate the food! Pile on your delicious red lentils first and make a bed for the fish. Top it with the cod, drizzle a little olive oil on top, crack some fresh pepper and squeeze on a little fresh lime. Pour yourself the rest of that Yuengling and enjoy your fabulous, homemade meal. We finished every. last. bite. and felt like we were at a fancy restaurant.
So friends... don't be afraid of lentils! Don't be afraid of trying a little Yuengling in your cooking! Have a little shindig and give this recipe a try. Every step is so simple and it tastes and looks so beautiful.
Happiest of Friday to you and yours.... ENJOY!