CULINARY THRILL SEEKING: Lentils: the ‘poor man’s meat’

Published 11:37 pm Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Lentils are the “poor man’s meat,” I just read in a cookbook. I plan to say that, at least to myself, every single time I eat them from now on. I already say or think that avocado is the “poor man’s butter” every time I enjoy one.

This lentil news came from Susie Fishbein’s book “Kosher by Design Brings it Home: Picture Perfect Food Inspired by my Travels.” Even the raw food on the cover looks tempting, featuring decorative measuring spoons full of spices with herbs, fruits and grains at the ready. The book was 15 years in the making, and I’m paused on the carrot salad recipe. A visit to France yields readers a recipe for strawberry mascarpone bread pudding. The lentil and tuna salad, we are told, is a Tuscan picnic treat. Here’s how she handles the carrots:

Spicy Pickled Carrots

Subscribe to our free email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

4 carrots, peeled, cut on the diagonal into one-fourth inch slices

1 cup apple cider vinegar

two thirds cup of water

one fourth cup plus two teaspoons of sugar

two and one half tablespoons mustard seeds

1 tablespoon dill seeds

two dried bay leaves

5 sprigs fresh dill

1 clove garlic, sliced

Place the carrots into a one-quart container or jar. Heat the vinegar, water, sugar, mustard seeds, dill seeds and bay leaves in a small pot, stirring to dissolve the sugar; do not allow to boil. Remove from heat; cool.

Pour the vinegar mixture over the carrots. Add the dill and garlic. Chill, covered, in the refrigerator at least overnight. The carrots will keep in this container for up to three weeks.

Good Books:

* Gelato in Italy and caviar in Russia? I’d share with my Playmobil friends. Richard Unglik compiled “Journey Around the World,” a child’s picture book with plenty of grown-up references. It’s a postcard/journal style batch of fun with 30 stops, based on those round-faced plastic figures that are probably somewhere in your home. Was my favorite the figurines in the style of the Beatles crossing Abbey Road? Yes, Paul was sans shoes. Or was it the Pope? What a fun way to learn about Van Gogh, Pre-Columbian civilization and bonsai.

* Customers first, product second. Sales reps should stick around after the ink dries on the contract. Once the pressure is off the salesperson and the sale is made, the pressure is on for the buyer for that product to deliver. Make your pitch and delivery better with 12 proven strategies for a customer-driven world, outlined in “Beyond the Sales Process” by Steve Andersen and Dave Stein.