Tuesday, 24 September 2013

Beetroot, Red Onion and Puy Lentil Bourguignon

When my nose begins to have that wet cat nose feeling,  my culinary thoughts begin to turn to making a Bourguignonne of chestnuts, mushrooms and roasted garlic.  It is perhaps my most popular of autumnal and wintry dishes.  

In fact I even made it last year - twice for a Christmas party served with pan-fried Sun dried Tomato and Rosemary Polenta that were shaped like Christmas Pine Trees.  But that was not the Bourguingnonne that I would be making.  Instead, I thought I'd try a recipe for Beet Bourguignon that I had seen on the Internet last year and logged it my head.  Beetroot is not my thing, but my man loves the stuff, so it was with him in mind that I kept the dish in mind, plus the fact that I do like trying out new dishes and flavour combinations.  

The Beet Bourguignon  in question comes from Green Kitchen Stories.   I do not have the cookbook: The Green Kitchen.  It has been on my wish list since last year, but I am pleased that the recipe is available on their website.  So with my fresh beetroot from the market - 2 bunches for £2.50 this is what I made with a few variations.
Its blatantly obvious, but I will say it anyway, the Beetroot Bourguignon was very red - not just from the bleeding colour from the fresh beetroot, but also from the red onion and purple top Milan turnip.  The colour (and flavour) would have probably intensified further, had I used red wine, but I haven't had any red wine in the house for a few weeks, so it was omitted from my recipe.  
Anyway, upon taste testing this Beetroot Bourguignon yesterday (its best made a day or two in advance), I can confirm it was not only rich in flavour, but utterly gorgeous, and this is a compliment coming from someone who is not a huge fan of beetroot.  
We will be having this for our supper later this evening with mashed potatoes and then again tomorrow with griddled or pan fried thyme polenta wedges.  

I am sharing this recipe with Fat Tuesday hosted by Jill at  Real Food ForagerKaren over at Lavender and Lovage for the Septembers edition of Cooking with Herbs; My Legume Love Affair 63.  MLLA  was created by Susan of The Well-Seasoned Cook, and is now run by Lisa of Lisa's Kitchen. This September it is being hosted by Swathi of My Zesty Kitchenand finally Javelin Warrior's for his Made with Love Mondays.  

Oh and talking about cats earlier, here is Moggy (the meowski that has adopted us ) eyeing up the competition.

Beetroot, Red Onion and Puy Lentils Bourguignon 
Serves 6
200g Puy lentils or equivalent
2 - 3 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, peeled and finely sliced
4 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
4 - 6 small red onions, peeled and cut into wedges (or whole pearl onions or shallots) 
4 large to medium beetroots, peeled and quartered
4 large carrots, peeled and sliced into large chunks
Optional: Purple Top Milan Turnip, sliced into wedges
2 sprigs of fresh thyme picked from the garden
Salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons of tomato paste
2 pints vegetable stock
2 - 3 bay leaves
Cook the puy lentils in plenty of water, when cooked.  Drain and set aside.
While the puy lentils are cooking.  Heat the oil in a wide pan, stir in the sliced onion (not the red onion or shallots) and garlic and saute until soft and translucent.  Then stir in the thyme, red onion (or shallots) and cook with the lid on for about five minutes, stirring now and again, to stop the onions from sticking to the pan.  Then stir in the beetroot, carrot (and turnip), seasoning to taste.  Cook for a few minutes for the onion mixture to coat the vegetables.  Finally pour in the vegetable stock, tomato paste and bay leaves.  Bring to a boil, then turn the heat down and simmer for  35 - 45 minutes or until the vegetables are tender.  Test this with a fork.  When the vegetables are tender, remove the thyme sprigs and stir in the cooked puy lentils and simmer for a further five minutes or until the stew sauce begins to look thick.  You can find the original recipe on the Internet, but I have linked it here


  1. This sounds fantastic, Shaheen - and the color is stunning! I personally love beets so I'm sure I would enjoy this. And a little red wine added to the dish also sounds like it would be very tasty...

  2. That looks like a beet lover's heaven! Will try this out minus the onions and garlic as we don't eat them- thanks for sharing btw your cat is very cute :)

    1. Thank you. I hope it tastes fine with the minus veg :) The cat isn't ours really, but it has adopted us a few months ago. It seems to think it is ours :)

  3. Delicious lovely color, thanks for sharing with MLLA#63.

  4. Hi. Just to let you know I tried the slow cooker spiced apple butter yesterday and not only was it amazingly easy, it is also delicious and different. Many thanks. I've posted a link to it from my recipe blog. Thought you'd like to know.
    Again, thanks
    J x

    1. Hi Joy, Thank you for letting me know and i am so pleased that you like it. I haven't made any yet, but am hoping to get hold of some apples this w/e. I'll come on over in just a moment :)

  5. this looks amazing - I love beetroot and lentils and love the play on words - might have to wait til next winter but I am sure this one will stay with me as one to make

    1. Thank you Johanna. I do hope you get to try it next year.

  6. I would make this in a heartbeat! I plan on it in the near future, in fact. I'm with your hubby on the topic of beets. I could eat them everyday. I have plenty from the garden at the moment and love to use as many as I can before they are cellared. Can't wait to try this! Gorgeous.

    1. Oh I am so pleased to read your comment. I took some over for my mother, but I don't know if she got round to trying it. I so hope you enjoy it when you make it and I envy your your home grown veg. I hope things are better for me next year and that i have a home of my home where I can grow, but first i need a job

  7. Oh, and love the photo of Moggy! Tell him (her?) he's way more animated than the competition :-) Moggy looks right at home, that's for sure!

    1. Thank you - I had originally thought Moggy was a girl and just assumed, recently found out Moggy is a boy - so he gets called both she he.

  8. Hi Shaheen, my mum picked this as the winning entry for last month's cooking with herbs prize of the cookbook! WELL DONE and please contact me with your address! Karen xxx

    1. Thank you Karen to you and your mum. I've just sent you an e mail.x


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