Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Chickpea and Lentil Pilaf

Although only seasoned with cumin and red pepper, this dish has layers of complex flavors.  It is also loaded with protein, and makes an extremely filling, satisfying vegetarian meal.  We used fresh parsley from the garden for this dish, but the cold snap here in Texas which killed most of our summer vegetables has forced us to rely heavily on pantry items such as chickpeas and lentils lately.  I feel depressed every time I look out the window at our dead eggplant and basil plants, but I have to admit that it has been a welcome change to eat our version of "cold weather" meals such as soups, stews and dishes like this tasty pilaf.  And I'm cheered by the fact that we're already ordering eggplant and tomato seeds for next spring (which here in Houston is only 45 days away).

Turkish Chickpea and Lentil Pilaf
adapted from The Sultan's Kitchen by Ozcan Ozan


1/4           cup            dried green lentils
1/2           cup            chickpeas
4              Tbs            olive oil
3                                yellow onions, diced
2               tsp             sugar
1               Tbs            lemon juice
1/2            cup            sushi rice
1/4            cup            orzo
2                                 tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped
1               Tbs            cumin
1                tsp             ground red pepper
2               cups           vegetable broth
1/4            cup            chopped Italian parsley

  1. Combine lentils with 2/3 cup water and cook until tender, about 20 minutes.  Remove from heat and set aside.
  2. Saute onions with sugar in olive oil over low heat, covered, until tender.  Uncover and add lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste.  Increase heat to high and cook until onions are browned.
  3. Add rice and orzo and cook about 2 minutes.
  4. Add lentils, chickpeas, cumin, red pepper and stock.  Reduce heat to low and cover.  Cook about 20 minutes, until all the liquid is absorbed. 
  5. Remove from heat, add parsley, and let stand covered about 5 minutes.
  6. Serve with thick Greek yogurt on the side.



  1. wonderful...i love lentils....

  2. The flavors sound wonderful. I'm not really a fan of chickpeas (other than in hummus), but I might really like this dish. The lentils more than make up for it in my opinion!

  3. I'm so jealous that your spring is 45 days away :( It's like -6 degreesC here :|
    This looks so wonderful and warming for these super cold nights!

  4. I also am jealous of your imminent spring. And personally I think chickpeas rule, so a big thumbs up!

  5. I love this combination of chickpeas + lentils power-protein dish!

  6. Parsley, cumin and red pepper sound like perfect seasoning for heart legumes. Delicious!

  7. The lentils pilaf sounds wonderful with chickpeas! Yum!

  8. This dish looks fantastic. So hearty and full of flavor from all the ingredients.

  9. Delicious. I love lentils and really should cook with them more. Hopefully one day I will listen to myself when I say this.

  10. This looks very yummy--oh, to have spring be so close. . . I look out and see brown. Everywhere. Waiting for another snow. Sigh.

  11. I've thought about planting my own Korean veggies but I'm such a black thumb...hmmm.

  12. This looks so so great! I miss cooking in my own home and can't wait to try your recipe!

  13. I just made this tonight and it was great! I had to swap out some things based on what we had and my weird cleanse diet, but it stayed basically the same. Yummy and perfect for a cold day.


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