The late Jeff Smith published a number of cookbooks notable for their range of ethnic food coverage and accessibility to the modestly skilled cook. Due to his notoriety later in life the cookbooks are not likely to be republished, so pick them up used wherever you can. They are American classics!
This recipe is close to one in his first cookbook The Frugal Gourmet. When in doubt, add a little more lemon juice. It is simple, refreshing and easy to prepare.
1/2 lb brown lentils
1 bunch (8 small) green onions, minced
1/2 c. fresh parsley, chopped
2 or 3 lemons
1/2 c. olive oil
1 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. salt
1 clove garlic, finely minced (optional)
1/2 tsp. coriander powder (optional)
1/2 tsp. cumin powder (optional)
- Rinse the lentils in a mixing bowl of cold water, then drain.
- In a 3 qt covered stock pot, simmer the lentils in 3 c. of water and the salt for 15 minutes or until just tender. Do NOT overcook or the lentils will become mushy.
- While the lentils are cooking, juice the lemons into a mixing bowl and add the olive oil, garlic, coriander, cumin and black pepper; whisk vigorously to mix into an emulsion.
- Drain the lentils into the bowl, add the green onions, parsley, dressing and toss to mix.
- Chill in the refrigerator for an hour before serving.