A well made rice and bean recipe is simple tasting, yet fully and completely satisfying – which is probably why this recipe is one of my favourite dishes to make. Serve it with a fuss free salad made of iceberg lettuce, super ripe tomatoes and a basic vinaigrette, and you’ve got yourself a complete meal.
In theory, it’s a very simple recipe, as long as you know how to cook rice, lentils and caramelized onions. In case you don’t, I’ve laid out the steps below with my usual tasty tips. Big picture – it’s best to get everything measured out first before you start cooking. This will allow you to cook everything at once to save time.
Rice and Lentils
- 2 cups water
- 1 cup brown lentils
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 cup basmati rice
- 1 tablespoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
- 2 teaspoon olive oil
- 3 cups thinly sliced onion about 2 - 3 onions
- ½ cup roasted sunflower seeds
- ¼ cup minced parsley
- Rinse lentils in a colander, removing any stones. Place lentils and water in a small pot. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low and simmer partially covered for 15 to 20 minutes until the lentils have softened, but still have a bite (as dente). Drain and set aside.
- Meanwhile, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a medium pot over medium heat. Add rice, cumin, salt and pepper; Cook and stir for 3 minutes until slightly toasted. Add water, bring to a boil, then cover, reduce heat to low and cook undisturbed for 12 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
- Meanwhile, in a large frying pan, heat oil over medium heat. Add onions; stir, then spread out the onions to cover the bottom of the pan. Cook, undisturbed for 7 minutes. Stir, then cook again undisturbed for 7 minutes, the onions should be starting to caramelize at this point. Cook and stir for 5 more minutes until soft and golden brown. Stir in cooked lentils and rice, sunflower seeds, and parsley. Season to taste.
- To make this recipe even simpler, use canned lentils instead of dried lentils. Skip step one, and add 1 can of drained and rinsed lentils to the caramelized onions and heat through before adding the rice.
- Freeze any leftovers for a quick weeknight meal.
- Serve on it’s own, with a side salad or grilled vegetables.