Lentil stew

Lentils, chicken and kale. Time previously spent nursing is now spent cooking baby-friendly food. Here’s hoping she eats it.

lentil stew

lentil stew

 

Lentil Stew

Ingredients:

  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 3 cloves of garlic, crushed and chopped
  • 8 oz dried lentils
  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth plus 2 cups water (or however you’d like to apportion broth and water for 4 cups total)
  • 1 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts (I buy frozen chicken breasts and keep them on hand for soups and stews such as this)
  • 1 lb fresh or frozen kale
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 oz chopped ham (optional)
  • 1 tsp lemon juice (optional)
  • 1 tsp tarragon (optional)

Directions:

  1. In a 4-qt Dutch oven, melt butter over medium-high heat. Brown the onions (about 15 mins). If you have fresh chicken breasts, you can cube them into 1/2-inch pieces while the onions are cooking. Alternatively, you can leave them and proceed as below.
  2. Reduce heat to medium. Add the garlic and stir 1-2 mins. Add ham (optional) and continue stirring, letting the ham brown a bit. Add the lentils and continue stirring, allowing the lentils to toast a bit.
  3. Add the broth and/or water. I like to heat them up in the microwave before adding, so that I finish cooking sooner.
  4. Increase the heat to bring to a boil. Add the chicken breasts and stir. Reduce heat to simmer and cover.
  5. While the stew is cooking, prepare the kale if it’s raw. I like the bags of washed kale at Trader Joe’s, because I hate washing vegetables. To cook it, I heat 1 tbsp olive oil over medium-high in a large (12″) saucepan or skillet. Add the kale in batches, always stirring to distribute them evenly as they turn dark green. Once all the kale is dark green, add 1/2 cup of water, stir, reduce heat, and cover to let it steam for 5-10 mins.
  6. As the lentils cook, they’ll absorb the broth/water and the stew will thicken. When the lentils are to your liking, remove the chicken breasts and dice them into baby-friendly (about 1/2-inch) pieces. Return chicken to the stew and add in the kale as well.
  7. Season with lemon juice, tarragon, salt and pepper to your liking.
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