Homemade Italian Lentil Stew

Italian Lentil Stew by Jim Bailey

Homemade Italian Lentil Stew

Prep Time

15 minutes

Cook Time

35 minutes

Serves

4 people

Lentils are a great addition to soups—high in fiber and protein, and low in fat! You will notice three types of lentils when shopping.

Green, also called French lentils, hold their shape better than the other two, therefore are great in salads. Red lentils cook faster than the other two and become tan in color when cooked.

The brown lentils, which I use here, become the softest when cooked and are perfect for soups and stews. Enjoy!

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Ingredients

  • 1 slice bacon, chopped
  • 1/2 lb salami, diced small
  • 1/2 small onion, minced
  • 1 cup baby carrots, sliced thinly
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic in oil
  • 3 cups beef or vegetable broth
  • 1 cup dry lentils
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 cup cooked couscous
  • 1 cup cooked spinach, squeezed dry, packed
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon each salt and black pepper

Preparation

  • 1 Add bacon to a large saucepan over medium heat. Cook until the desired doneness
  • 2 Drain fat and add salami, onion, carrots, and garlic. Cook, while frequently stirring, for about 6-8 minutes, or until onions are softened
  • 3 The carrots can still be quite hard. Add broth and lentils
  • 4 Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, cover and simmer until lentils and carrots are tender, about 20 minutes, stirring once or twice
  • 5 Stir in tomato paste until well incorporated. Add couscous, spinach, cumin and salt and pepper to taste. Stir well and serve hot

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