Stormy Weather

As I write this the Ella Fitzgerald version of the song Stormy Weather is running through my head. Look it up, listen as you cook this dish. Especially if the weather has taken a turn for the cool or rainy, as it has here, where you are.  Serve this dish with mashed potatoes, rice, egg noodles, something on which to lavish the rich sauce.  Enjoy.

Stormy Weather aka Flanken and Red Lentils

  • 1-2 lbs flanken
  • 1 Tbs smoked paprika
  • 2 onions (white or yellow)
  • 2 large stalks celery
  • 3-5 cloves garlic
  • 1 can diced tomatoes
  • 2 cups red wine
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup red lentils
  • salt and pepper to taste

Peel the onions and slice them.  Slice the celery.  Peel garlic and cut into large chunks.  Open the can of tomatoes.  Assemble all other ingredients.  Heat a Dutch oven or other heavy pot with a fitting lid on a burner over medium high heat until hot.  Put flanken in a single layer in the pan and sear.  Turn meat once, browning it on both sides, then remove to a plate.  Lower the heat on the burner slightly then add the onions, celery, and paprika to the pan.  Cook a couple of minutes, stirring a few times then add the garlic, tomatoes, wine, and water.  Add in the lentils and put the flanken back in the pot with everything else.  Stir once to fully mix then bring to a boil.  Lower heat to a simmer, cover and allow to cook for at least 2 hours, stirring once in a while.  The heat should be on pretty low – no more than medium low.  When you are almost ready to serve (the meat should be very tender and the lentils should be soft) remove lid and cook on higher heat for 5 minutes.  Taste, adjust flavor with salt and pepper as needed.  Serve hot.  This also makes great leftovers.  Listen to old blues, drink a glass of red wine, watch the rain. 

 

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