Arroz con lentojas
- 1c. dried lentils
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 medium-size green bell pepper, seeded, cut in half, and one half finely chopped
- 7c. water
- 1/4c. extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2lb. slab bacon, rind removed, or thickly sliced bacon, cut into 1/4″ dice
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
- 2t. salt, or to taste
- 1/4t. freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2t. dried oregano
- 1/2t. ground cumin
- 2c. raw converted white rice
In a large saucepan over medium heat, combine the lentils, bay leaf, the unchopped belle pepper, and water, and bring to a boil, uncovered. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer until the lentils are tender, 45-60 minutes. Drain the lentils, reserving the cooking liquid, and discard the bay leaf & boiled green pepper half.
In the same saucepan over low heat, heat the oil until fragrant, add the bacon, and cook, stirring, until crisp, 8-10 minutes. Add the onion, chopped bell pepper, and garlic and cook, stirring, until the onion is tender, 6-8 minutes.
Add the lentils to the hot oil mixture, stir, then add 5c. of the reserved lentil cooking liquid (make up the balance with water if the reserved cooking liquid is insufficient to make up 5c.), raise the heat to high, and cook, uncovered, until all the liquid has been absorbed and small craters form on the surface of the rice, 15-20 minutes. Stir the rice with a fork, reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer until the rice is dry and fluffy, 10-15 minutes. Transfer to a serving platter and serve hot.
Makes 8 servings.