I don’t always like to languish over a hot stove/oven for hours preparing meals The Barefoot Contessa and/or Martha Stewart would be proud of. With two kids, simple and quick is best and this can sometimes include weekends. Generally, my weekends allow me to create elaborate and fun meals, but that all can change, i.e. events, adult birthday parties, kid birthday parties and is it me, but it seems that all of my kids’ classmates turn the same age at once. It’s like back to back parties. My refrigerator sometimes is rife with birthday party invitations and I often have to rely on my kids to let me know, which invitation belongs to whom. Sometimes they don’t include the age. Ah, mommy life!
Back to the food ….
I found this recipe from one of my favorite bloggers, Laura Wright at The First Mess. Besides being a wonderful photographer, Laura’s food is a celebration of plant-based eating. Her recipes are vibrant, easy to make and truly showcase the diversity of fresh fruits and vegetables in a plant based lifestyle. This truly was a simple and quick meal to make, bursting with earthy flavors from the mushrooms and lentils. I made one minor tweak to the recipe and added additional liquid as the original recipe is more of a stew and not a sauce. I also used Swiss chard (what I had on hand) instead of kale. I’ll be making this again as it is truly comfort food.
Fettuccine w/ Creamy Lentils, Wild Mushrooms, and Swiss Chard//serves 4
Adapted from The First Mess
1 lb. package fettuccine
1 cup French green lentils
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium shallot, finely diced
1 lb. mixed mushrooms, stemmed and sliced
Sea salt and ground black pepper, to taste
1-2 cloves garlic
2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves
2 tablespoons white wine
2 teaspoons tamari soy sauce
1 ½ cups vegetable stock
1/3 cup unsweetened plant based milk
3-4 Swiss chard stalks, stems removed and leaves sliced
Bring a medium saucepan of water to a boil. Add the lentils to the water, with a pinch of salt and simmer the lentils until just tender, about 20 minutes. Drain and set aside.
Next, bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Cook pasta until just tender, 8 to 10 minutes or according to package directions. Drain, reserving ½ cup of the cooking liquid, and return the pasta to the pot.
In a medium pot, sauté the shallot. Cook until the shallots are soft and translucent, about 4 minutes. Add the sliced mushrooms to the pot and let them sit for a minute. Stir the mushrooms and add salt and pepper. Add the garlic and thyme and stir. Once the garlic is fragrant, about 30 seconds, add the white wine and tamari. Stir the mushrooms. Add the drained lentils, vegetable stock and plant milk to the pot. Stir and bring to a boil.
Ladle half of the mushroom mixture into your blender, adding enough liquid from the pot. Blend on high until smooth. Scrape the creamy blend back into your pot. Add the Swiss chard and stir. Bring to a boil and check for seasoning.
Tip: The original recipe from The First Mess is a stew consistency, which is divine within itself, but to get a saucier consistency add additional liquid.