The thing is, I really want to know what to do with them. And that my friends, in case you hadn't guessed, is precisely what we're about to do!
As it turns out, part of the beauty of lentils is how versatile they are! Once cooked, you can literally do anything (culinary) with them. You can toss them into your favourite salad, you can add a bit of garlic and spinach and have a side dish with a double-punch, you can add them to a stew, soup, mix them with some smashed potatoes and veg and make a shepherd's pie... the list goes on and on!
Now that I've whet your appetite with all of the things you can do with lentils, let's talk about preparation. Lentils are super easy to cook, and, unlike most other pulses, don't require any soaking (seriously, who has time for that?!). Different types of lentils have different cooking times and best uses. Here's a little list of the most common types of lentils and what they taste best in.
Red lentils (pictured above) are probably the most common type of lentil, and tend to cook in about 20 minutes. Red lentils are best used to thicken soups and casseroles as they tend to disintegrate into a thick puree, so maybe try throwing some red lentils into your favourite chilli recipe or add some to a soup to give it a bit more oomph for winter.
Puy lentils are less common and considered superior in taste and texture (snobby little suckers!) so use these when you really want to show off your culinary skills. Again, they're great in warm salads or braised in wine and tossed with fresh herbs (told you they were snobby).
Whichever lentil you choose, put your them in a saucepan, cover with water, bring to a boil, simmer until cooked and drain. That's it. Done. They are now ready for whatever lovely meal you want to add them to.
I'm sorry to say that there's no recipe this time, but stay tuned for a new lentil-based recipe (will it be a bolognese sauce? lentil tacos? shepherd's pie?) in the next few days. Until then, why not try some lentil experiments?
Bon appetit! xx