French Lentils with Sautéed Mushrooms and Roasted Vegetables

This recipe was adapted from Clean Start by Terry Walters. Here’s a great opportunity to clear out the fridge, as nearly any winter root (or squash) will work wonderfully.  French green lentils are smaller and darker than brown ones.  They hold their shape in cooking, so are better for salads and pilafs.  You’ll find them at Whole Foods and many grocery stores.

Serves 6

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups peeled and cubed (3/4 inch) mixed roots or winter squash (such as carrot, parsnip, turnip, rutabaga, celery root, potato or butternut squash)
  • 1 large onion peeled and cut into ½ inch wedges
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • ¾ cup dry French green lentils
  • 3 cups vegetable stock or water
  • Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2 Tablespoons lemon juice (plus more)
  • 1 Tablespoon butter
  • 4 cups thinly sliced mushrooms
  • 1 Tablespoon white wine or sherry
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh parsley leaves

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 ° F.  Toss roots with olive oil to coat.  Place on a baking sheet.  Toss onion with olive oil to coat and place on a separate baking sheet.  Roast both until tender (onions will take about 25 minutes, roots about 35).  Turn once or twice during cooking.
  2. While vegetables are roasting, place lentils in a saucepan with water/stock and a pinch of salt.  Bring to a boil; reduce heat and cover.  Simmer until tender (about 20 minutes).  Drain well.  Toss with one Tablespoon olive oil and one Tablespoon lemon juice.
  3. In a large skillet, heat butter with one Tablespoon olive oil.  Sauté mushrooms until they’ve reduced in size and browned in many spots.  Add sherry and one Tablespoon lemon juice.  Add thyme and cook until liquid is mostly absorbed.   Fold in lentils and roasted vegetables (with any caramelized pan drippings).  Heat through.  Season with salt and freshly ground pepper.  Toss with parsley and add more lemon juice or olive oil as needed for taste.
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