Thursday, February 18, 2010


I don't really feel like writing about Lagos right now so I'm gonna share Amparo's recipe for lentils. Maybe this dish is called Spanish Lentils or Lentejas al Amparo, but we just call them lentejas. So feel free to try this recipe, but they might come out very badly because Amparo doesn't go by a recipe when she makes them, and my extensive Spanish vocabulary doesn't really extend into cooking terms, so I did a lot of smiling and nodding while she explained it to me. She also makes these in her "express pot" which the internet told me was a pressure cooker (it looks like a big pot but the lid locks down on it) so if you have one of those all the better.

300 grams of lentils (about 10.5 ounces)
1 medium sized onion
5 cloves of garlic
1 laurel leaf
2 carrots
olive oil
half spoonful of paprika (no I don't know what size spoon, I guess if you like paprika use a bigger spoon)

Put the lentils, whole onion (peeled!), 3 cloves of garlic, the laurel leaf, and the carrots in the pot. If you are using a pressure cooker, fill it with cold water to just above the solid ingredients (for a normal pot, twice the height of the solids). Then throw in a "chorro" of olive oil, which apparently from watching her do it means a quick pour in a circle around the outside edge of the pot (a splash? but more I think . . .) Bring it to boil and then turn the heat back down so it simmers, and cover it. This needs to cook until the lentils are soft, and if you are using a normal pot and the water gets low you need to add some more, because the lentils soak up the water. I don't know how long that part takes because I wasn't watching, but probably at least a half an hour (though if you burn your lentils I won't be responsible).
Once the lentils and other veggies are soft, put the pot on low heat and fish out the onion, garlic, and carrots and crush them with a fork, then put them back in. In a frying pan, brown the other two cloves of garlic with some olive oil or butter and however much paprika you decided to use. Then dump that in with the lentils and add salt (to taste, I assume, I have no numbers on this either). Finally let that cook 15 more minutes on low heat.
Hopefully what you ended up with is not too liquidy, it should look kind of goopy with clearly visible little lentils in it. I took some pictures of my last lentils meal for you to compare with, but I don't know how well they came out or how they truly convey the lentility of this dish. It's not really a soup, but it's not solid either, it's just lentejas. I prefer mine with a lot of bread (like a baguette, but with a harder exterior, though I guess a baguette would work too), and I think that's a general consensus among the Spaniards too. Enjoy?

Photo unrelated, but I totally rocked this picture of a horse today while walking on Monte Naranco:

"What are you lookin' at?"


  1. Thanks for the recipe - it still amazes me that you would eat anything that looks that way, but I'm sure they are delicious. I will definitely try to make a pot soon! -- DAD

  2. I can't believe that you would even try something that looks like this. . . you are really walking on the wild side!! I love your horse picture. Aunt Connie



  4. If someone wanted to follow this recipe, it's probably the worst ever written.

    Just sayin.

  5. You should have read it when it was still in Spanish! No but really, I get what you're saying

  6. Hi. I don't know where my other post disappeared to, but please update your blog. Lentils are getting old, and I know you've got other adventures to tell us about. You don't want to get too far behind!