Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Slow Cooker Lentil Rice Casserole (Clean) ***

I have this listed as clean, but you obviously need to leave out the cheese for a cleaner dish.  Honestly, while the cheese is always a welcome addition to any dish (in my world, anyway), it's really not all that necessary in here.  I'll keep using it, just because I love me some cheese, but I think it would be just as good without it.

The flavors in this are amaze-balls.  I used a pack of three pepper and onion blend (I'm all about those things right now!), added spinach, and went with the taco seasoning.  I would definitely recommend that route.  It gives it a flavor that's really different from other lentil recipes.  Because I wanted to make sure we had leftovers, I did 1.5 times the original recipe.  In retrospect, I really think that the recipe as written is definitely closer to 6 servings than 4, so I wouldn't bother doing that again.

The only problem I ran into was that even after cooking 10 hours, my lentils were still pretty hard.  After doing a little research online, it looks like our hard water and old beans were probably the culprit.  Next time, I'll use bottled water to soak them and make sure I get fresher beans.  I definitely want to give this another go, though.  If nothing else, I can always just convert it to a rice-only dish, and it would still be yummy.

(luckymommyto2boys ~ Amy ~ TheHumbledHomemaker)

3/4 c. dry green lentils
1/2 c. brown rice
1 c. water
2 1/2 c. chicken stock
1 c. tomato sauce (8 oz. can) or 1 6-oz. can tomato paste + an extra 1/2 c. stock
3/4 c. chopped onion
1 c. chopped green or red pepper
1 grated or finely chopped carrot
2 c. cooked, shredded chicken
optional: other vegetables like spinach, broccoli
3 tsp. Italian seasoning or taco seasoning
2 cloves crushed garlic or 1/4-1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. salt
Dash pepper
1 c. grated cheese (I prefer sharp cheddar, but try a Mexican blend with the taco seasoning or mozzarella with the Italian)
optional: salsa or spaghetti sauce to serve

Combine rice, lentils and water in crock pot. Soak overnight. (Do NOT turn crock pot on!)
In the morning, drain the water and mix in all remaining ingredients except cheese.
Cook on high for 4 hours or low for 8 hours. Add cheese in 30 minutes before done.
Serves 4-6.
*luckymommy/Amy's notes: I used a 3-pepper and onion blend, added spinach, and chose the taco seasoning.  I want to make sure to use bottled water and fresh lentils next time.

No comments: