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Mediterranean Peasantry Inspirations

Some vegetarian dishes, perfect plates for 2010 Lenten observance.

Mini Shells with Lentils (Lumachine con Lenticchie)

Earthy, hearty and simply all-around-good, lentil based dishes never fail me.They are grown on every continent with possibly the exception of Australia (Charlie Darwin,  help me out here!)




Ingredients 
1 lb dry lentils, 
1 lb imported mini-shells, cooked very 'al dente'
3 cloves of garlic, with skin
2 bay leaves
EVOO,  S/P
Fresh Red Chili  Pepper, julienned for garnish
Romano Cheese, grated


Rating
The fan club bean and legume friendly. Could not go wrong here.

Recipe
Cook the lentils from scratch. In a deep pot add EVOO, dry lentils, gently fry for 1-2 minutes. Add bay leaves, garlic cloves,  Cook over low heat until tender, Remove garlic cloves and bay leaves 3/4 of the way through.


Toss with pasta in  deep pan with some of the reserved starch water from the pasta.. Garnish with the Chili pepper.

Amber Cauliflower with Yellow and Red Peppers.


 
Ingredients
1 Large fresh, Cauliflower
Anatto powder
Sweet paprika
1 Large Yellow Bell Pepper
1 Large Red Bell Pepper
1 garlic clove, slivered 
EVOO, S/P

Rating
The fan club walked away.saying "What's that". 0-1 final score.

Recipe

Cut the peppers into 3 inch sticks., Break the cauliflower into large sided flowers. Place in a deep pan with EVOO, S/P, and spices. Stir until the cauliflower is fully coated with the colorants. Cook all over low heat in a covered pan. Avoid stirring so that the vegetables remain intact.

When plating , separate the peppers from the cauliflower for added effect.

Salute!

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