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Sunday, August 4, 2013

Super Sloppy Joes

Because I only cooked once this week.  It is what it is.

I made these sloppy sammies Tuesday, not intending to put them on the blog, because it was more of a "just throw a bunch of stuff together" kind of dish than a well-planned recipe idea.  I had a half a package of mushrooms that needed to be used like, now, some leftover frozen onion and pepper from the goulash a couple of weeks ago, bread (have I mentioned that I work in a bread store?  I always have bread) and randomly, for whatever reason, a can of sloppy joe sauce.  I'm thinking maybe I bought it for a recipe contest a while back...?  Regardless, sloppy joes were destined to be made.

I've made lentil sloppy joes in the past, using brown lentils and a sauce from scratch.  But, in true AO&AV style, I used red lentils, because that's what I had on-hand, and a pre-made sauce because, well, I had some.  And also because it was convenient.

These were deliciously sloppy and done in about 20 minutes.  I've included the recipe below, but bear in mind that I didn't intend to share this recipe with y'all, so I just kind of made up some of the measurements.  Use them as a guideline rather than a hard rule.

1 cup red lentils
1/2 cup diced onion
1/2 cup diced green pepper
4 oz mushrooms, diced
15 oz can sloppy joe sauce
2 Tbsp sweet pickle relish
1/2 tsp cumin
1/8-1/4 tsp chipotle chile powder
Salt and pepper

In a medium-sized sauce pan, combine lentils with 2 cups of water and bring to a boil.  Turn the heat down a smidge to get a rolling boil, and cook for about 15 minutes, stirring occassionally. 
*Keep in mind that red lentils become soft and mushy the longer you cook them.  The trick here is to almost undercook the lentils so that they still keep their shape.  Basically, once the majority of the water is absorbed, you can remove the lentils from the heat.
So, while that's happening...
In a separate medium-ish pan, saute onion and pepper for about 5 minutes over medium heat.  Add mushrooms and cook for another 3-5 minutes.  Add lentils and sauce, and stir to mix well.  Add in the relish, cumin, and chile powder and stir to combine.  Allow to simmer for about 5 minutes.  Season with salt and pepper, to taste.

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