I was about 99% ready to make Ina Garten’s lentil vegetable soup after the string of dreary days we had last week — I went to hear Ina speak at the 92nd Street Y last summer and her response to my question of “What is your favorite thing to cook on a day like today?” (it was also raining like cats & dogs) was her hearty and delicious lentil vegetable soup. I completely agree — what could be better than cuddling up to a steaming bowl of soup and a good book on a vile day… I’d take that anytime over working a 10 hour day in the renovated
closet office I now call my (hopefully temporary) home at work.
I happened to flip through the big yellow Gourmet cookbook on Friday and saw this divine looking recipe for Laduree‘s fried eggs over warm lentil salad… so I decided to toss my lentil soup plans out the window and go for something new.
You will need:
3/4 cup lentils (preferably French green lentils)
6 oz thick-cut bacon, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick strips
2 leeks (white and pale green parts only), finely chopped
2 celery ribs, finely chopped
1 large carrot, finely chopped
2 tablespoons red-wine vinegar, or to taste
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh tarragon
1 tablespoon olive oil
8 large eggs
1 cup baby spinach
Put the lentils in a medium sized pot and fill with water until they are covered by about 2 inches. Bring to a boil and then let them simmer for about 20 minutes or until tender.
In a non-stick pan, cook the bacon until browned, remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels.
Remove the pan from the heat and add the tarragon. Season with salt and pepper to taste, and move to a large bowl. Drain the lentils and combine with the veggie mixture, then add half of the cooked bacon.
Wipe out the pan, and fry the eggs two at a time until the whites are set but the yolks are still runny.
Mound the lentils on a plate and top with baby spinach, eggs, and a sprinkle of bacon.