They're so often forgotten, lentils... but they are a great source of protein and a terrific addition to any meal! The thing about this recipe is it's very versitile, I've added the basic ingredients.. but go crazy add, what ever floats your boat, spinach, eggplant, tomatoes, etc... During the summer or if you're in a warmer climate, terrific served chilled as a side salad!
Place the lentils in a colander and rinse. Add them to a medium sized pot, with water rising 1 1/2 inches over the lentils. Add a pinch of salt and bring to a boil. Cook till lentils are tender. Approximately 10 minutes. But keep an eye on it to insure the water is not evaporated.
In the meantime, in a saute pan, add the olive oil or cooking spray, heat up the pan and add the onion and garlic. Cook till onion is semi soft. Add the carrots, zucchini and mushrooms. Cook these till tender. Turn off the heat and wait for the lentils.
If the lentils are done at the same time as the veggies, drain the lentils reserving about 1/3 cup of the water, if any is left. Add only the lentils to the veggie mixture and blend. Add soy sauce and season with the pepper, and red pepper flakes if desired.
If the lentil mixture seems a little dry, add either the left over lentil water, or a little water, over a low flame, let that "marry into" the pan of goodies creating a "gravey" of sorts. Serve hot, or chill. Great over rice, you could even add rice to the recipe and have a main dish! I'd personally use brown rice, but any will do! Bon Appetit!