From The Mozza Cookbook by Nancy Silverton
Leftovers are awaiting me for lunch ... and I can't wait! I'm going to take a scoop of Lentil Castellucciano and top with a slice of fresh mozzarella cheese then place in the microwave. After it heats, I'm going to eat spoonfuls of hearty lentils paired with the creaminess that only a dairy product can add. And it's all so easy and quick. Or try this simple and delicious recipe as a side dish.
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
¼ pound prosciutto (optional but it really adds nice flavor)
1 large Spanish onion, finely chopped
1 large carrot, peeled and finely chopped
1 celery rib, finely chopped
1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt, plus more to taste
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste
2 large garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon double-concentrated tomato paste
1 pound Umbrian lentils (about 2½ cups) or lentilles du Puy or beluga lentils (I use brown lentils)
2 quarts chicken stock
¼ cup finishing-quality extra-virgin olive oil
(You can prepare the lentils to this point up to three days in advance. Set the lentils aside to cool to room temperature, transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate the lentils until you are ready to serve them. Just before serving, warm the lentils over medium heat, stirring often and adding enough water to loosen the lentils to a creamy consistency).
Finally, Drizzle the finishing-quality olive oil into the lentils, stirring vigorously, until the lentils are creamy and emulsified, about 1 minute. Serve warm or at room temperature.
With a 2-3 ounce portion of lentils, paired with a serving of dairy - like an ounce of cheese, organic milk or plain yogurt - this make a great complete meal. If using as a side, place a one ounce portion next to your main course and vegetable.
To make your life easier, watch this short video on how to chop an onion
Try to buy local and seasonal ingredients and shop at your local farmers market.
cutting board with a wet cloth or mat underneath to prevent slippage
stockpot - at least 6 quarts
measuring cups and spoons