I returned from England last week and have been so jet lagged that I haven't been cooking anything new. But, I did make something at my Airbnb the week before that was so good, I want to share it with you and I want remember it to make again too. I had limited ingredients and sometimes that's a blessing. I knew I wanted to make a Lentil dish as I wanted leftovers for lunch the next day and I thought I had a jar of Sun Dried Tomatoes in the fridge, half full. But it wasn't there and all I could find that might work were Butter, Celery, Leeks and Bacon. The Bacon of course was English Bacon, which is a lot more meaty and a lot less fatty. Here in America it's called Back Bacon (and a bit like Canadian Bacon only thinly sliced). I cooked the Lentils in Water with Chicken Bouillon cubes added (as I couldn't find canned Chicken Broth) until tender. This flavors the Lentils so no extra salt is needed. Meanwhile, I sautéed the Leeks and Celery in Butter with the Bacon. When the Lentils were done, I drained them and added everything together. It was so good and even better the next day!
Lentils with Leeks, Celery and Bacon
2 cups of Green Lentils
4 cups of Chicken Broth (or 4 cups Water with 2 Gluten Free Bouillon Cubes)
1 large or 2 small Leeks, green part cut off, sliced in half and then sliced thin
2 stalks of Celery, trimmed and sliced thin
6 pieces of English Bacon (or 1 cup of Canadian Bacon or Ham) cut into small pieces
3 Tablespoons Butter
fresh ground Pepper to taste
Put the Lentils and the Chicken Broth in a small pot. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to a simmer. Cook for 20 minutes and check to see if they are tender. If not, cook for an additional 5 - 10 minutes and check again. Lentils should take no longer than 40 minutes until they get tender. When tender, drain off the broth and put into a mixing bowl.
In a frying pan, melt the Butter and add in the Bacon, Celery and Leeks. Cook until the Leeks and Celery are softened. Then add to the Lentils and toss to mix thoroughly. Sprinkle with Black Pepper and serve warm or cool.
Five Element Analysis
Lentils as Pulses belong to the Earth Element. The Leeks and Butter bring in the Metal Element. The Celery and Chicken Broth contribute the Wood Element and the Bacon makes sure the Water Element is present too. The Fire Element is only found in the tiniest bit of Black Pepper so it would be good to serve a green salad with Tomatoes to bring that element in too for a more balanced meal.