It's beginning to look at lot like...Thanksgiving. OK, so I didn't shoot and post anything that I specifically prepared for holiday meals over the past month, but this Napoleon's-chef of a recipe utilized many leftover ingredients which otherwise would likely have gone missing and grotty in the fridge.
This is an extremely versatile dish. You can easily veganize it by omitting the cheese and preparing the biscuits with butter and honey substitutes. You can also dispense with the biscuits altogether; the lentil/vegetable base makes a great quick stew, or hearty soup if you return all the cooking water to it. Trimmed of the fat and full of a confetti of natural vegetable colors, the pared-down riffs allow you a transition to more sensible eating, a perfect kick-off for New Year's resolutions to better health. Please remind me of this when I blog about two take-no-prisoners celebratory recipes early next year.
Puy Lentil Cobbler with Roasted Vegetables and Pumpkin Biscuits - [Lentil and vegetable recipe, my own. Biscuits are adapted from Country Living; link follows.]
Serves 4 - 6.
2 cups Puy lentils, rinsed
2 vegetable bouillon cubes
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon dried sage, dried thyme, or crushed, dried rosemary
1 1/2 cups baby or julienne carrots
1 cup red onions, sliced or diced (I used halved pearl onions)
2 cups diced potatoes, peeling optional (scrub potatoes well if leaving peel on)
1 cup diced rutabaga (also known as a swede or yellow turnip)
3 cups coarsely chopped kale or chard (I used both)
Salt and Pepper to taste (optional; bouillon will be salty)
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
Recipe for Pumpkin Biscuits, below
Bring a large saucepan of water to boil. Add bouillon cubes and lentils, making sure water covers lentils by at least two inches. Return to boil, then reduce heat to simmer lentils until cooked but slightly al dente. Drain lentils, reserving them in a very large bowl with 2 cups of their cooking liquid.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a large oven-proof skillet over medium-low heat, warm olive oil briefly until it shimmers. Stir in your dried herb choice to distribute, then add all the vegetables, tossing well to combine. Place skillet in oven on center rack. Roast vegetables for 12 minutes. Toss them again, and roast for an additional 12 minutes. Remove from oven and stir into lentils and reserved liquid. Transfer into a large casserole dish, at least 9 inches in width or diameter. Top mixture with shredded cheese. Arrange cut biscuits over cheese without overlapping. (Depending on size of casserole, you may have several extra biscuits.) Place assembled casserole on a cookie sheet, arranging any extra biscuits around the casserole. Bake for 12-15 minutes, until biscuits are well browned and cheese has melted. Carefully remove from oven; the casserole will be very hot and heavy. Serve in casserole at table on a large trivet or heat-proof tile. A very large serving spoon will ease dividing and transferring to individual dishes. Top each serving with a biscuit or two. Serve additional biscuits on the side.
Pumpkin Biscuits - Recipe from Country Living
[The changes I made (white whole wheat flour for the white flour, and halving the butter), created a much less rich and much more rustic dough than the original. The flavor of pumpkin is very subtle. For a more pronounced pumpkin flavor, use white flour.]
Been There, Done That ~
Roasted Root Vegetable Pot Pie
Yellow Raspberry Rosemary Crisp
Crumb-Topped White Peach Pie
Other People's Eats ~
Peach and Berry Cobbler - Kalyn's Kitchen
Sweet Potato Cobbler - Saveur
Vegetable Cobbler - Ezra Pound Cake