Here's a twist on the egg for supper - a midweek staple for so many of us. Lentils are cooked with shallots, garlic and garam masala, then mashed into a ramekin with an egg nestled in the center, and baked until the egg is gooey and soft, oozing into the spicy lentils. Easy, warm, and very, very good.
The cooked lentils keep well, so you can make a batch ahead of time and put this meal on the table about 20 minutes after you walk in the door.
Smashed Lentils With Egg
makes 4-6 servings
2 cups of lentils
4 shallots, or 1/4 red onion
2 cloves of garlic
2 teaspoons garam masala
1/2 cup of fresh cilantro leaves
Salt and pepper to taste
Rinse and drain the lentils. Mince the shallots and garlic and chop the cilantro. Heat the olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat and add the shallots and garlic. Cook, stirring, for about five minutes, then add the garam masala and lentils. Stir so the lentils are coated with the oil and garlic, then add the cilantro and cook until wilted.
Add 4 cups of water and turn the heat to high. Bring to a boil, then cover and reduce to a simmer. Cook for about 20 minutes. If they are too watery at the end, leave the lid off for a few minutes. Season with salt and pepper, and mash with a fork.
Heat the oven to 350ºF. Lightly grease individual baking ramekins. Mound the lentils in each then make a hollow and crack in an egg. Cover with foil and bake for about 20-25 minutes, or until yolk is just set.
Serve with lime pickle or another spicy chutney.