Wednesday, 16 March 2011

Red lentil and feta lasagne

I'm going to move out of my flat in West Hampstead in about a month's time. As I'm putting all my stuff in storage for the first 6 weeks while I'm lucky enough to go traveling in China and Laos, I'm trying to finish off all the food in my cupboards. Feels a bit unnecessary to pack lots of dry goods like rice and bulgur in boxes to store for two months, and believe me, I have enough stuff that needs to be packed as it is....

This recipe come about so that I could finish off my red lentils, some leftover red wine, and because I was in a mood for comfort food, and to me lasagne is for sure all about delicious comfort.

Red lentil and feta lasagne (4-6 portions)
2.5 dl red lentils
1 can of chopped tomatoes
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 large yellow onion, finely chopped
0.5 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp oregano
a pinch of sugar
a pinch of dry flaked chili
2 dl of chicken or vegetable stock
2 dl of red wine
250 g of fresh or dry lasagna sheets (if you use dry lasagna sheets, you can speed up the cooking time in the oven by
5 dl milk
1 tbsp flour
1 tbsp butter
300 g feta cheese, grated
olive oil
salt and pepper

Saute onions and garlic in a little olive oil in a large frying pan for a couple of minutes.

Add the lentils, wine, stock, sugar and spices. Let simmer for 20-30 min until the lentils are soft. Add more water if the sauce starts to go dry before the lentils are cooked. Add salt and pepper to taste. It shouldn't be too salty as the bechamel sauce with feta will be quite salty

Make a bechamel sauce: Start by melting the butter in a medium sized pot, then add the flour and stir on low heat to form a paste.

Add the milk and bring up to nearly boiling, all the time stirring to avoid the sauce to burn. Continue to simmer, whilst stirring, on lower heat until the sauce reaches desired thickness.

Add 2/3 of the feta cheese to the sauce and stir until the cheese is dissolved. Remove the pot from the heat, and add nutmeg, pepper and salt to taste.

Layer lasagna sheets, the lentil sauce and bechamel sauce in a oven dish. Top with a layer of bechamel sauce and the remainder of the feta cheese.

Cook for 20-30 min in the middle of the oven.

Enjoy with a fresh salad like rocket, spinach and watercress with a little olive oil and lemon juice.

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