This is my version of mujaddara which is a delicious spicy dish of lentils, rice and caramelised onions with parsley which dates all the way back to a recipe book written in 1226 from Iraq. It is served in restaurants from Egypt to Isreal and is delicious served with a salad, chopped cucumbers and with plain yogurt or labneh. It is served at room temperature so it’s perfect for preparing in advance for a dinner or picnic. You can serve it with a green salad and or with meat or fish. It’s a staple round mine.
Serves 4-6 depending on what you serve it with.
2 x 250g bags of cooked brown basmati rice (supermarket)
1 x 400g tin or carton of green or brown lentils
1 tablespoon of ground cumin
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
1 tablespoon ground coriander
¼ -½ teaspoon of chilli powder
2 minced garlic cloves
2-3 finely sliced large red onions
4 tablespoons of olive oil
2 lemons zested and cut into wedges for squeezing
big bunch of roughly chopped parsley
Salt to taste
Start by gently frying the onions in 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. They need to brown and caramelise so this can take about 20 minutes. Leave to cool.
Meanwhile, in a large frying pan put the rest of the olive oil and gently fry the garlic and spices for about a minute.
Next, put in the drained lentils and the rice from the bags.
Stir fry till heated through and coated in the spices and leave till cool (room temperature) Put into a serving dish mix in the parsley and lemon zest, salt to taste and serve topped with the caramelised onions.
Lastly…if you aren’t going down the vegetarian route, Mujadarra is perfect with roast lamb, lamb chops, roast chicken, koftas, morroccan meat meatballs or any middle eastern dish that you would serve a pilaf with.