In Defense of Lentils

Ever since I started hanging out around folks from Six Nations and helping out with the Two Row Times, I have experienced some resistance to this delicious pulse. I’m not sure if it’s from a lack of knowledge or the stigma that lentils are for granola-types and vegetable eating hippies, but some members of the Two Row Times staff have turned their noses up at lentil dishes served to them. In defense of lentils, I’ll admit to loving all delicious pulses, beans, and legumes as protein sources, especially when meat can be cost prohibitive.

Lentils are among the oldest cultivated crops in the world. Canada is currently the number one exporter of lentils which mainly come from Saskatchewan.

From a health perspective lentils are high in protein, a great source of iron and fibre. They are also a great flavour carrier that can be easily incorporated into your favourite family meals. To me they are particularly great in the fall and winter months as an accompaniment to braised meats. They also can be incorporated into salads or as a base for a dip.

Lentil Stew

  • Dried Red Lentils
  • Unsalted Butter
  • Potatoes
  • Carrot
  • Onion
  • Celery
  • Garlic
  • Canned Tomatoes
  • Salt/Pepper
  • Oregano
  • Parsley
  • Optional: Crumbled Sausage
  1. Dice all vegetables in the same approximate size.
  2. Cook carrots, onions, celery on medium-low heat in butter.
  3. Cook until onions become clear, add garlic and cook for a few minutes more.
  4. Fill pot with water, canned tomatoes, potatoes and lentils.
  5. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and cook until potatoes are done.
  6. Be mindful of your water level as lentils will thicken the stew.
  7. Add water as need be, depending on the consistency of the stew that you desire.
  8. Season with oregano, parsley, salt and pepper.

Note: Lentils do not need to be pre-soaked

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