Well it has been nearly a week with no grains, no sugar, no starch, no dairy (except for a fermented yogurt) and so far we are still alive! The first few days on the diet I started having some major detox symptoms as my body is slowly working out all the toxins. I was extremely tired ALL day and just wanted to sit on the couch and pick my nose (just kidding). By the fourth day I was feeling much better and was able to get off the couch, take a shower and even shave my legs! :)
We've been trying to juice every morning with our juicer, and I've really enjoyed coming up with all sorts of concoctions. Most of them are pretty darn tasty, but I must say I've had a few blunders (fyi-do not juice too much celery.....you will regret it!) All this time I have been wondering why I've gone so long without juicing! What was I afraid of? That it would taste bad? That my friends would think Im weird? Heck no, juicing is my new day job! It is such an easy way to eat raw, fresh vegetables and fruit and after each sip you feel more alive and energized!
Okay, now for the recipe. So on our diet we can not have any legumes aside from lentils, thank the Lord, because I truly love lentils. I can do without the black beans and my husbands dutch ovens :) The one rule with eating lentils is that we must soak them 24 hours prior to cooking. To read about the benefits of soaking see here. If soaking your legumes doesn't crank your tractor you can still make this dish, however I highly recommend taking the extra step to soak because it aids in the breaking down and digestion of the lentils.
This dish is a an easy supper or hearty lunch. If you arent into eggs you could substitute chicken or salmon with marvelous results.
Umbrian Lentils with Olive Oil Fried Eggs
(My instructions include soaking the lentils and a few other tweaks, if you do not wish to soak you can follow the recipe here)
- 2 TBSP extra virgin olive oil, plus more for frying
- several strips of bacon (this is just to garnish so use how ever much you want)
- 2 carrots, diced fine
- 2 ribs of celery, diced fine
- 1/2 yellow onion, diced fine
- 1 large garlic clove
- 1 1/4 cups Umbrian lentils or green lentils
- 1 quart chicken or vegetable broth
- salt and pepper
- 4 large eggs (if you want to give each person 2 eggs make it 8 large eggs)
- arugula leaves
- Parmgiano-Reggiano (for garnish)
- balsamic vinegar (for garnish)
24 hours prior to cooking pour your lentils in a big bowl and cover with filtered water. Set aside covered. After several hours check on the lentils, they will have absorbed some water so if more water needs to be poured into the bowl then you may do so.
When it is time to cook drain the lentils in a fine mesh strainer and rince with cool water.
In a saucepan or crockpot (I recommend a crockpot or dutch oven because the lentils will take up a lot of room) add the bacon and cook over medium heat until the fat has rendered. Once cooked move bacon to paper towls to drain and discard the fat liquid. Return the pan to the stove, drizzle with olive oil and add the chopped carrots, celery, and onion. Cook until the veggies are soft, about 6-8 minues, and then add the garlic and cook for 1 more minute.
Add the lentils and about 1 3/4 cup of stock. Bring to a boil and then reduce to simmer stirring occationaly. Once most of the liquid has cooked out, about 30 minutes or so, have a taste to ensure the lentils are cooked all of the way through. ***If you did not soak your lentils you will need to cook longer and keep adding more stock, explained here)***
Once the lentils are cooked sprinkle with salt and pepper and cover while you prepare the eggs.
In a large nonstick skillet, heat a thin film of olive oil. Crack the eggs into the skillet, season with salt and cook over moderately high heat until the edges are golden, the whites are just set and the yolks are still runny. Spoon the lentils into shallow bowls and top with the eggs and arugula. Grate the cheese over the eggs, drizzle with balsamic vinegar, and garnish with some bacon pieces. Serve right away.