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Middle Eastern Rice & Lentils

by noshnosh (follow)
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The typical Middle Eastern combination of rice and lentils proves just how filling and satisfying such a simple dish can be.

The flavour and pull of the meal is thanks to the array of herbs and spices, which additionally add a plethora of health benefits.

Preparation Time: 5 minutes
Cooking Time: 25 minutes
Makes: 5 servings

1 cup brown rice
1 tsp olive oil
1 tbsp garlic, minced
2 tsp fennel seeds
400g can chopped tomatoes
1 tbsp olive oil
3 brown onions, finely sliced
1/2 tsp cinnamon powder
1 tsp cumin powder
1/2 tsp coriander powder
400g can brown lentils, drained and rinsed

Place the brown rice and 2 cups of water in a small saucepan and bring to the boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook for 10-15 minutes, or until fluffy and all water absorbed. Remove from heat and set aside.
Meanwhile, using a small saucepan, heat the 1 tsp olive oil over a medium heat and add garlic and fennel seeds, frying for a minute, before adding the tomatoes. Bring to the boil and and let simmer for 5 minutes.

In a large wok, heat the remaining oil until warm and add the onions. Cook until soft and starting to brown. Sprinkle over the cinnamon, cumin and coriander powders and combine thoroughly.

Add the rice and lentils to the wok, stirring until golden and warmed through.

To serve, top a generous portion of the rice mixture with the tomato sauce, and season with cracked black pepper and chilli flakes if desired.

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