Black Spruce Hound

A Wisconsin Girl in the Woods, Knitting, Crafting, and Cooking. Also: Ugly Dresses.

September 1, 2014

Barbecued Lentil Sandwiches

Barbecued lentils probably sound....not appetizing. But believe me, they are very much appetizing.

It's Labor Day, and while everybody is outside slapping burgers on the grill, I'm over here talking about lentils. Typical. 

While I'm not a huge fan of lentils on their own, they make an amazing meat replacement. Swap the ground meat in a recipe for lentils and it's a simple switch that tastes so good - lentil tacos? Fantastic. Sloppy joe lentils? Delicious. Lentils in that pot of chili? Awesome.

To me, lentils taste like tiny little beans, but with a heartier, almost meaty-ish flavor in the background. That probably makes them sound disgusting, but to me they're meaty like mushrooms are meaty. It's all good. 

The husband, dyed-in-the-wool meat eater, loves lentils. This is one of our new favorite ways to eat them - with barbecue sauce.

The lentils are cooked, then combined with sauteed vegetables (and pineapple!) and barbecue sauce. 

It's sweet and tangy, very filling, and nobody's going to miss the meat. Lentils also have the added bonus of being extremely inexpensive, and one bag will make enough to feed an entire neighborhood. They are high in protein, fiber, and iron.

This recipe calls for 1/2 cup of dry lentils, which was enough to feed 2 people for 2 days in this house. Double the amount of lentils for a larger crowd, and add a little extra sauce.

Barbecued Lentil Sandwiches

1/2 cup dry green or brown lentils, rinsed 
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small onion, small dice
1 red bell pepper, small dice
1 small carrot, grated or cut into a mince
1/2 cup pineapple chunks or tidbits, drained and patted dry
4 cloves garlic, minced
Salt, pepper
1 to 1 1/2 cups barbecue sauce, depending on how saucy you're feeling that day
Buns and sliced cheese for serving

Cook the lentils according to the package directions, then remove from the pan and set aside. In the same pan, heat the olive oil over medium high heat. Add the onion, bell pepper, carrot, pineapple, and garlic. Season lightly with salt and pepper. Saute, stirring often, for about 8 minutes or until all the veggies are tender. Then throw the lentils back into the pan and add the barbecue sauce. Simmer everything together for another 5 minutes. Serve on a bun, topped with cheese. 


August 29, 2014

Photo Friday: Woodpecker

This is my 3rd woodpecker Photo Friday this year, and still no pileated ones. This is total b.s. 

While working in the office a few days ago I heard the unmistakable sound of a woodpecker hammering its brain out on a tree. I ran outside and managed to get several pictures before the mosquitoes forced me back inside. 

Have a good weekend! 

August 26, 2014

Kitchen Inspiration

The dust has barely settled from the living room remodel, so let's just jump into the kitchen, shall we? 

This is not going to be a full-on remodel, as I think the husband would rather serve me divorce papers than redo the entire kitchen right now. That, and the room is about halfway to where we want it anyway. At the moment it just needs a few touch-ups. I picked out that orange color that's on the walls when I was in my ALL THE COLOR ALL THE TIME phase, and it's time for a change. (That phase is also responsible for the bathroom being the color of cooked spinach, yikes.) 

Here are a few kitchens I'm looking at right now that are giving me some serious envy inspiration. 

My kitchen could maybe look like this (lolz) if I gutted it.  But seriously, how gorgeous.

I'm really reaching for shit here, but that's okay. This kitchen is perfection.

I'm really diggin' on open shelving. Dust be damned! (I should maybe remortgage the house to buy a stove like that. Yowza.)

Years ago I removed a few of the kitchen cabinet doors and painted the insides of the cabinets white in order to have  a few open shelves. Now I just want to go whole-hog and remove the upper cabinets. Or move them around a bit and intersperse them with shelving.

It's a lot to think about! The paint color is already picked out (same as the living room, thanks to having an extra gallon that needs to be used up before it gets gunky) and we just need to figure out The Shelving Situation and perhaps consider new light fixtures.

I just know y'all are riveted, so I'll keep the blog updated on the kitchen progress. Which, as we all know by now, will move at the pace of a tortoise with two sprained legs.

See you later!

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