French Lentils with Bacon, Goat Cheese and Thyme
French Lentils, also known as Green Lentils, are delicious — Earthy but delicate.
This recipe is intended as a Side Dish — With Smokey Bacon, creamy Goat Cheese, and Thyme. Wonderful with Duck, Pork, Lamb, even Salmon. Leftovers can certainly be extended as a Soup — Simply add Chicken Broth, sliced Carrot, and sauteed Onion or Leek. Heat to simmer — Till Carrots are tender.
Ingredients / Prep:
2 cups dried French Lentils
1 medium Carrot — Peeled/Cut in half
1 stalk Celery — Cut in half
1 medium Onion — Cut in half
4-6 cloves Garlic — Peeled/Minced
1 cup heavy Cream
3 oz. goat Cheese — Crumbled
Unsalted Butter or Oil
1 cup smokey Bacon – Diced
1 tbsp. fresh Thyme — Chopped
Black Pepper — Freshly ground
Directions / Assembly:
In large Dutch oven, combine Lentils, Carrot, Celery, Onion. Add water to cover by 1 inch — Bring to boil, reduce heat to low and simmer, covered, for 20 minutes, or till Lentils are just tender. Drain, discard vegetables — Set Lentils aside.
Mix together in small bowl, Goat Cheese with half the intended Cream; when mixed to ‘smooth’, add and mix remaining Cream.
In large, heavy pan, add small amount unsalted Butter (or Oil) — Saute Bacon pieces to just cooked (not crisp). Turn heat to low — Add chopped Garlic; Saute lightly for 1 or 2 minutes.
Remove all but 2 tbsp. of fat from skillet — Add Lentils; Mix in Cream/Goat Cheese mixture; Mix in Thyme. Simmer over low heat till cream mixture has been completely absorbed by the Lentils. Taste and correct seasonings.