3 Simple Ways to Cook Lentils
This post written by guest blogger—Cheryl Rajkumar
Lentils are nice little legumes packed with high amounts of protein, iron, folates, fiber and minerals and a healthy ingredient versatile enough to include in your everyday cooking. Lentils are low in fat, contain no cholesterol and are naturally gluten-free. Legumes are a big part of Southeast Asian and Middle Eastern cuisines and can replace meat in a vegetarian diet due to their high protein content. Lentils can be prepared in a variety of ways and depending on the time available and the type of lentil, you can choose one of the following methods. While most lentils do not need pre-soaking, it is a good idea to pick through the lentils to remove debris and rinse well before cooking.
This is the commonly used cooking method for red lentil. These lose shape easily and turn golden yellow once cooked. Use one cup of water or broth to cook 1 cup of lentils. They reach the desired texture in 10-15 minutes. Cooked lentil can be used to thicken soup, added to salads or can be used in one pot meals like pilafs and kedgeree.
A crock pot or slow cooker is a perfect way to cook white lentil. Combine meat, vegetables, spices and a teaspoon of curry seasoning with white lentils and cook on high setting for up to 3 hours or low setting for up to 8 hours. The exotic scents of curry spices will enliven the flavors of this hearty stew.
This is the quickest and the most energy-efficient method to cook yellow lentils, commonly used in Indian homes. It takes about 5-7 minutes to cook them to a mush and is the best method to cook lentils, as it retains all the nutrients unlike the conventional cooking method. Check back tomorrow for a delicious Pearl Onion Daal Curry recipe! Have any great recipes to share? Let us know in the comments below!
Cheryl Rajkumar is a home maker and a food blogger. She develops recipes using real and fresh seasonal produce available locally. She lives with her husband in San Jose, CA. Her blog Kitchen Khemistry covers multiple cuisines and mélange of recipes.