Soba Noodles with Black Lentils, Smoked Bacon and Greens

Soba Noodles with Black Lentils, Smoked Bacon and Greens
In this East-meets-West recipe, lentils are teamed up with soba, the buckwheat noodles that are a staple in Japan. We love the way sweet, freshly harvested carrots and smoked bacon add their own magic to this dish. A blend of barely-wilted garden greens, including kale, arugula and chard add a refreshing note. We’ve enjoyed this dish both hot and cold, so make plenty so you’ll have leftovers. Omit the bacon and you’ve got a vegetarian dish that even meat-lovers will appreciate. With soul-satisfying hearty flavor and pleasingly firm, but tender textures, this dish is truly an earthy delight.

4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
4 ounces lean smoked bacon or pancetta, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
1 onion, finely chopped
2 – 3 medium carrots, halved and cut into 1/4 pieces (about 1-1/2 cups)
2 garlic cloves, minced
3/4 cup black lentils, rinsed
2 cups water
2 cups chicken stock
1/4 cup Porcini Elixir, or dry white wine
1 lb garden greens, such as arugula, chard, kale or a blend, chopped into 1-inch pieces
12 ounces soba noodles (1 package)
1/4 cup parsley, chopped, optional
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Grated Parmesan cheese

Brown the bacon or pancetta in 2 tablespoons olive oil until lightly browned, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the onion and carrots and cook until the vegetables are softened, about 5 to 7 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the lentils, water and broth, cover and simmer until the lentils are fully cooked and tender, 40 to 50 minutes.

Uncover and stir in the porcini elixir. Simmer for 2 minutes, then add the greens, stirring them in a handful at a time, and cook until completely wilted, about 5 – 8 minutes.

Meanwhile, bring a pot of water to the boil and add the soba noodles. Reduce heat to a low boil and cook for 5-6 minutes or until the noodles are cooked through, but still slightly al dente in texture. Drain and rinse with cold water. Drain again. Toss the soba noodles with the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil.

Gently toss together the lentil mixture with the soba noodles. Season with salt and pepper. Serve with plenty of grated Parmesan cheese on the side.

Products suggested for this recipe:

Earthy Delights

2871 Jolly Road

Okemos MI 48864

tel 855.328.8732

fax 517.253.7366

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