Say it Ain’t So: It’s Time for Lentils!

On the Internet, there are a lot of fights. That’s just the nature of the beast: you try throwing millions of people together behind the cloak of anonymity and see if you don’t get extreme opinions and extreme fights. One of the most memorable in my (and maybe your) little corner of the Internet is the fight over and meme-ization of lentils.

It all started in the realm of healthy eating, sizeism, and food justice, a strange and constantly shifting world in which half the people judge food choices harshly (and offer up their own, clearly brilliant suggestions on how to eat healthy and/or the importance of losing weight and/or on how to find good food anywhere), half the people rail against this judgment (and offer up anecdotes mostly, facts and figures sometimes that contradict statements about how to eat healthy and/or the importance of losing weight and/or the ability of people to find good food anywhere thanks to food deserts and the like), and a tiny percentage posts pictures of bacon and cheese curls while grinning mischievously.

“LENTILS!” was the rallying cry of the first group, much to the dismay of lentil-lovers everywhere. “LENTILS!” shot back the second group, photoshopping images of the humble legume until it reached meme status. We’re at the point where lentils have a meaning of their own – now no longer a humble food, they are pawns in a larger battle over food.

And y’all, it’s time to reclaim lentils. It’s time to get them back into the kitchen, into a pot, and then onto a plate, which is then placed in front of me. That’s where they belong.  Lentils, meet your maker!

If you want to be a lentil maker, here’s what you need:

1 cup of rinsed lentils

2 cups of veggie broth

½ yellow onion sliced into nice big pieces but not so big you can’t fit them in your mouth

4 cloves garlic, diced all fine

3 large carrots chopped into bite size pieces

Dash of lemon juice

Sriracha to taste if that’s your thing (it’s totally my thing)

Cook the lentils in the veggie broth – basically, put the two together in a pot, bring to the boil, then turn it down into a simmer. Depending on how firm you like your lentils, let it cook for 15-45 minutes. I let mine go for 25. Once the broth has boiled, throw in all of the veggies. During the last two minutes or so of cooking, splash in that lemon juice. Things should be smelling pretty good at this point, and the onions should be real nice and translucent.

Now, I ate this over rice with some sriracha on top. I thought it was great. But it is great on its own, too, or with bread. I have no idea what wine to pair with this, but hey, if you’ve got wine, why not pair it with this?

6 replies on “Say it Ain’t So: It’s Time for Lentils!”

You forgot the eight people who can’t eat lentils going “I would eat lentils if I could, because I like being healthy, but I cannot eat lentils because of [insert medical thing here]!”

If I was motivated enough to find recipes with pureed lentils, I would go for it. Alas, I am not motivated. I am only just branching into pureed bean territory, because black bean soup is delicious.

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