Creamy French Lentils with Bacon & Thyme

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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

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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.