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Braised Lentils on Toast

Author - Gena Hamshaw (adapted from Nicholas Day and Judy Rogers)
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil plus an extra drizzle
  • 2 large carrots diced
  • 2 stalks celery diced
  • 1 medium white or yellow onion diced
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 1/4 cups lentils ideally French or beluga lentils
  • 1 or 2 sprigs fresh thyme optional
  • 1 cup red wine
  • 2 to 2 1/2 cups water or vegetable broth
  • Toast optional
  • Balsamic vinegar optional


  • Heat the olive oil in a medium pot over medium heat. Add the carrots, celery, and onion, along with a few pinches of salt and a turn or two of pepper. Cook for five minutes, or until the vegetables are tender.
  • Add the bay leaf, lentils, thyme (if using), wine, and 2 cups water. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer. Simmer, uncovered, for about 30 minutes or until the lentils are tender, stirring occasionally and adding the last 1/2 cup water or broth if the lentils get at all dry. The finished lentils should have a little soupiness and extra broth at the bottom of the pot. When the lentils are finished, remove the bay leaf, taste them, and adjust salt and pepper as needed. You can add an extra drizzle of olive oil, if you like.
  • The lentils can be served with a cooked whole grain, in a bowl, with a fresh salad, or over toast. I like them best drizzled with a syrupy balsamic vinegar.


Adapted from Nicholas Day and Judy Rodgers' Lentils Braised in Red Wine

 from The Zuni Cafe Cookbook.
Leftover lentils will keep for 5 days in an airtight container in the fridge.