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Monday, July 12, 2010

Socca & Lentils

When I was searching for a recipe for pizza crust the other day, I kept coming across recipes for Socca bread, this Italian fried/baked chickpea based flatbread that is often used for pizza crust.  I kept it in the back of my mind.

I'm still embroiled in reading the Amelia Peabody series, and in the most recent book I was reading, "The Serpent on the Crown," they kept eating lentils.  I'm extremely open to the power of suggestion, and I found myself towards the end of the book starting a nice lentil stew.  It also seemed the perfect opportunity to make the Socca to accompany it.

For the Socca I used an exact recipe (I made mine with fresh basil) and it turned out quite pretty:

I also used freshly ground white pepper vs. black pepper, because that's what I had onhand.  I found that 2 tsp. of white pepper was a bit much for us, and overall we would have like the bread plain (odd for my family but true). My hope was that we would be able to fold it and eat the lentils with it, kinda like a naan bread, but it was not as foldy as that. It was very good dipped in the lentils though.

Lentil Stew
1 bag lentils
1/2 cup chopped onions
1 clove fresh garlic
1 tsp. tumeric
1/2 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. coriander
3 cups fresh spinach, shredded
1/2 jar marinara sauce
7 cups water

This is a really, really easy recipe.  Throw everything in the pan, and cook on low heat for a couple of hours, stirring occasionally to be sure that the bottom isn't burning.  About forty-five minutes before you want to serve, turn the heat up and bring it to a low boil. Simmer for 40 minutes or so, or until the lentils are really tender. I took the lid off of mine for the last 20 minutes or so to reduce the liquid.  Serve immediately.  You could also cook this on low in a crockpot for probably about 8 hours.

The baby ATE THIS UP.  The rest of us liked it, but he especially enjoyed it. 

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