Olive's Kitchen: Lentil Vegetable Stew
It’s the holidays, and what’s better during Winter than a piping hot stew! One of our favorite recipes, lentil vegetable stew is vegan, and packs plenty of protein, nutrients, and minerals, to keep you feeling strong and warm:
1 cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 medium-size yellow onion, chopped (about 2 cups)
5 medium carrots, cut into 1/2-inch pieces (about 2 cups)
5 celery stalks, cut into 1/2-inch pieces (about 2 cups)
1 (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained
6 garlic cloves, finely chopped, divided
1 1/2 cups dried French green lentils
2 fresh or dried bay leaves
2 (6-inch) rosemary sprigs
1/4 cup packed chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1 1/2 teaspoons grated lemon zest plus 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, divide
6 cups cooked mixed beans (such as cannellini, kidney, or cranberry)
Salt and pepper to taste
Heat 1/2 cup of oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high. Add onion, carrots, and celery. Cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, for 15 to 20 minutes.
Stir in tomatoes, 1 tablespoon garlic, 2 teaspoons salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper. Cook, stirring often, until garlic is fragrant and tomato juices begin to caramelize, for 4 to 6 minutes.
Stir in lentils, bay leaves, rosemary sprigs, and 5 cups of water. Bring to a boil over medium-high. Reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until lentils are just tender, for 20 to 25 minutes.
Meanwhile, stir together parsley, lemon zest, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and the last tablespoon of garlic. Let mixture stand for about 10 minutes for the flavor to fuse with the oil. Stir in remaining 1/2 cup oil, and season with salt to taste.
Add beans, the remaining 4 teaspoons salt, and the remaining 1 teaspoon of pepper; stir to combine. If needed, stir in additional water to thin stew, if desired. Cook over low, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until beans are heated through and lentils are tender.
When serving, stir in a dash of fresh lemon juice, and season to taste with salt and pepper, if necessary. Spoon gremolata over servings of stew, for a colorful and flavorful garnish!
For more healthy recipe suggestions, check your Bello 2 or FITTO app for recommendations!