Friday, October 12, 2012

Spicy Lentils with Ground Turkey

Spicy Lentils with Ground Turkey
This is exactly how I like my lentils, meaty and spicy! This dish warms you up without weighing you down.  The ground turkey keeps it light while the hot sauce keeps you coming back for more! Try it with Lauren Marie’s PumpkinCornbread.  Spicy and sweet? Oh yea!
Makes 4-5 servings

2 cups dried green lentils, rinsed and       drained
3 medium-sized carrots, sliced
3 celery stalks, chopped
1 quart (32 oz) low-sodium beef broth
3 cups water
1 bay leaf
¼ cup plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin       olive oil, separated
1 lb ground turkey
1 teaspoon garlic granules
1 teaspoon onion granules
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon plus 3/4 teaspoon salt, separated
1 teaspoon plus ½ teaspoon pepper, separated
¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 medium yellow or sweet onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon cumin
7 dashes of hot sauce*

                Place rinsed lentils, carrots, celery, beef broth, water, and bay leaf in a large stock pot.  Bring to a boil over high heat. 
                Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil over medium heat in a large pan.  Add turkey, garlic granules, onion granules, chili powder, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon pepper, and ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes.  Stir together and cook until turkey is just cooked through, 5-6 minutes.
                Once lentils have been brought to a boil, turn heat down to low.  Add cooked turkey to the lentil mixture and simmer uncovered for 45 minutes or until lentils are soft, stirring occasionally.
                Keep lentils on low heat while you heat the remaining ¼ cup of extra-virgin olive oil over medium heat in a large pan (use the same pan as the turkey=less dishes!).  Add onion and garlic.  Cook until very soft, about 8-10 minutes.  Pour softened onions and garlic into the lentil mixture and stir well. 
                Finally, add cumin, hot sauce, the remaining 3/4 teaspoon salt, and the remaining ½ teaspoon pepper to the lentils.  Stir well.  Serve warm.  Enjoy!!

Lauren Marie’s Tips:
*Hot Sauce:  Make sure it is gluten free.  “Crystal” brand hot sauce is gluten free.

*If you are serving this to a big crowd with different heat (spicy) preferences.  Add 3-4 dashes of hot sauce instead of 7 dashes and place the hot sauce bottle on the table.  That way, everyone can have it the way they want.                                                                                

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