Thursday, July 21, 2011

Traveling at the Dinner Table: Mujadarrah

Mujadarrah: Lentils, rice, plain yogurt and fried onions. Yum!
We have recently added a new staple to our dinner set. It's called, "Mujadarrah." It is a Middle Eastern dish comprised of lentils, rice, plain yogurt and fried onions and it is SO good. It's a great (vegetarian) meal on the cheap. The flavors are a bit exotic to most American taste buds, but I bet you would like it! :) Want to give it a try? Here is the link to the original recipe shared by Melissa Mueller. I've made this recipe 3 times now and experimented with the different suggestions on the site (and a couple of my own ideas) each time. The third time is a charm apparently, because it was absolutely perfect this time around. Here's the recipe with my own alterations:

Ingredients:
  • 3/4 cup olive oil
  • 3 large yellow onions, sliced in to rings
  • 1 1/3 cups uncooked green lentils
  • 3/4 cup uncooked long-grain white rice
  • 1 TBL. ground cumin
  • 1 chicken bouillon cube
  • 1 1/2 tsp. garam masala
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Plain yogurt for topping the lentils and rice
  • Some more garam masala - to sprinkle on top :)
  Directions:

1. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet on medium-high heat. Stir in the onions and cook until dark brown, stirring frequently throughout the process. It takes longer than you think! ~20min. Keep cooking until every onion is at least a caramel brown color. The more brown the onions are, the sweeter/crunchier/more delicious they are in the meal.

2. While your onions are cooking, place lentils, bouillon cube, and ground cumin in a medium saucepan with enough water to cover the lentils completely. Bring them to a boil, then turn down the heat and let simmer, uncovered, for 15 minutes.

3. Stir uncooked rice in with lentils. Add enough water to cover the mixture. Add a little salt and pepper to taste as well as the 1 1/2 teaspoons of garam masala. Cover the saucepan, and continue to simmer for about 20 minutes, or until the rice and lentils are tender.

4. Mix half of the fried onions and the leftover olive oil from the pan into the lentil mixture. Serve mixture topped with plain yogurt, some more fried onions, and a little sprinkling of garam masala. Enjoy! :)

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