Lentils with Rapini

I have watched a small amount of television in the past couple of days. I am not big on commercial television, well, because of the commercials. When I want to watch a program I usually watch it by alternate means. But yesterday and today I have found myself searching and watching a couple of programs with commercials. All I can say is, no wonder the world is getting fat.

The commercial for “Hamburger Helper”, something that I have never understood to begin with, is now advertising that you can add your own ingredients (like vegetables) to their slop and that will make it better. This infuriated me. They are trying to sell you a box of dried (probably really cheap) pasta and powdered, chemical ridden flavor and now they are having the audacity to say that you can add your own ingredients. In other words you can cook, but don’t forget us! Here is my advice. Forget about them and every other product advertised on television. If you see a food product advertised, be assured that it is not something that you should be eating. Only processed junk is advertised. You will rarely see whole foods such as fruit, vegetables or meat advertised. That is because there is not enough profit margin to afford advertising. Oh, and its FOOD.

Here is a recipe that is my friend Kirk’s. I generally don’t share many other people’s recipes, but Kirk’s are really good and hopefully his cookbook will come out soon and you can all enjoy all of them. This one is particularly amazing because it is great in this kind of weather and it does that one thing that I love about vegetarian meals, it seems like it has meat in it even though it does not.


  • 1 Pound Dried Lentils, rinced
  • 4 Cloves Garlic
  • 1 Sprig Rosemary
  • 1 Handful Sage Leaves
  • 28 Ox. Can Whole Peeled (San Marzano) Tomatoes
  • 1 Pound Rapini, Coarsely Sliced with Large Stems Removed
  • 1/2 Cup Olive Oil
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Pinch of Red Pepper Flakes
  • 1/2 Cup Chopped Italian Parsley


  • Large Sauce Pan with Lid
  • Chef’s Knife
  1. Remove the rosemary needles from the stems and the same with the sage.
  2. Chop the garlic and herbs together.
  3. Saute the herb mixture in the pan with red pepper flakes and half of the olive oil.
  4. As the garlic begins to give off its odor, add the lentils and coat with the oil.
  5. Chop the tomatoes and add to the mix with about half of their juice.
  6. Salt and pepper to taste.
  7. Add enough water to just cover everything and bring it to a boil.
  8. Add the rapini and reboil.
  9. Lower the heat to simmer and cover with the lid slightly akimbo (Kirk’s word) for about 30 minutes or until the lentils are cooked.
  10. Remove from heat and stir in half the parsley and the rest of the oil.

Garnish with additional parsley and serve with crusty bread and red wine.


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