I made this divine little heart-warmer sometime last month during the most brutal stretch of -30 degree weather all winter. We stayed inside, curled up under a blanket and devoured this stuff. It’s safe to say it did its job.
I decided to whip this up one afternoon when I found I had 3 bags of dried lentils to use up and a desire to have dinner completed quickly so Mark wouldn’t starve to death when he got home. I decided to make an Indian-inspired chili, rather than the typical Mexican version, and picked up some sweet potatoes to go with the lentils. The presence of garam masala, cumin, and coriander also gives this update of the vegetarian classic a boost.
You can also swap the sweet potatoes for butternut squash and pair it with kale, chick peas or black beans instead of lentils. The world is your oyster.
*1 cup dried brown lentils, cooked and drained
* 1 onion, diced
* 2 cloves garlic
* 2 sweet potatoes, roasted or cooked in the microwave and chopped into cubes
*1 cup vegetable broth
* 1 can diced or plum tomatoes
*1 tsp coriander (crushed seeds or ground)
* tbsp cumin
* 1 tsp garam masala
* 1/2 tbsp chili powder
* salt and pepper to taste
Cook the lentils according to the directions on the bag and drain. Pierce the potatoes with a fork and place them in the microwave and cook them for 10 minutes or until soft and tender. You can also roast them in the oven, which is more socially acceptable, but I had a hungry husband on his way home who skipped his lunch so I had to be quick about it.
Once the potatoes are cooked, scoop them out of their skins and chop them into bite-sized cubes or chunks. Heat the oil in the pot and add the garlic and onions. Once they’re translucent, add the vegetable broth and tomatoes and lower the heat. Let it simmer for a few minutes and add the lentils and sweet potatoes. Add the cumin, garam masala, coriander and chili powder to taste. Keep adding the spices and stirring until it gets the desired taste: Preferably a sweet, curried spicy flavour.
This would be wonderful served with a side of Naan bread (of course we didn’t have any) or Basmati rice. Voila! Enjoy, and feel this chili warm up your soul!