Potaje de Lentejas – Lentil Stew

29 Nov

Another “Plato de Cuchara” or spoon dish – we like our pulses here in Spain.  Many of these dishes were traditional as you could feed large families with few ingredients which were not costly.  Meats are typically added at the end (usually pork products) so the beauty is that they can be vegetarian dishes too, if you prefer.

Lentils are great, as apart from being cheap, they cook fairly quickly and only need rinsing but not presoaking.

For four people as a main dish or six as a starter you´ll need

  • About 500g of lentils – we have the flat green ones here
  • Water to cover
  • 3 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, quartered
  • Half each of a red and green pepper, chopped into bite sized chunks
  • Two tomatoes cut into bite sized chunks
  • 1 bay leaf
  • A couple of carrots peeled and finely diced
  • A stick of celery plus the leaves (if it has leaves).  Finely dice the celery but not the leaves.
  • 4 or 5 whole fat cloves of garlic
  • 2 medium potatoes peeled and cut into small cubes (keep these in a bowl of water separately)
  • Sprig of fresh thyme or rosemary if you have it
  • ¼ teaspoon each of pimentón and paprika
  • Salt to taste (at end of cooking)
  • Optional – a couple of chorizo and/or morcilla or your favourite sausages

Rinse the lentils then add all the vegetables and spices apart from the salt to a large cooking pot.  Cover well with water, add the oil and bring to the boil.  Reduce the heat slightly but don´t let them come off the boil while cooking as this will make the lentils hard. They will probably take about 45 minutes or so.

When the lentils are soft, add the potato and meats (if using) and continue cooking until the potatoes are cooked. Remove the bay leaf and celery leaves and add salt (and pepper too if you like) to taste and you´re ready to serve. Slice the sausages into smaller pieces before serving. A drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and a squeeze of lemon over the top really lifts the flavour, but that´s just the way I like it!

Tastes even better the next day.


69 Responses to “Potaje de Lentejas – Lentil Stew”

  1. thecompletecookbook November 29, 2011 at 16:52 #

    Wow, can’t believe how different your site looks!
    Love this recipe – I have been craving something extra healthy of late and this will definitely do the trick.
    🙂 Mandy

    • Chica Andaluza November 29, 2011 at 17:09 #

      I fancied a change – we´ll see what reactions are before I finally decide! This soup is definitely one of those which makes you feel bouncing with vitamins 🙂

  2. Food,Photography & France November 29, 2011 at 17:12 #

    Fantastic – I was in the middle of preparing supper and I’ve now changed course to prepare this dish. It’ll probably get eaten tomorrow as you suggest.

    • Chica Andaluza November 29, 2011 at 17:44 #

      Ooh – l let me know how it turns out! I think the flavours just have a bit more “depth” (if that doesn´t sound too “cheffy”!) the next day. Bon apetit!

  3. Mad Dog November 29, 2011 at 17:15 #

    That’s a good one – I haven’t cooked anthing like that for years! Nice new look to the blog 😉

    • Chica Andaluza November 29, 2011 at 17:45 #

      Thanks Mad Dog! We like our pulses here. Glad you like the new look – it was time for a little change. Hope the trip went well 🙂

  4. Rufus' Food and Spirits Guide November 29, 2011 at 17:25 #

    Those look great. I love that added bit of olive oil and lemon.

    • Chica Andaluza November 29, 2011 at 17:45 #

      The oil and lemon really adds a Little something special at the end…yum! (Or “nom” as you Americanos say 😉 )

  5. IamSimplyTia November 29, 2011 at 17:38 #

    I love lentils. Great dish!

  6. cookinginsens November 29, 2011 at 17:40 #

    Absolutely fabulous! My kind of bowl!

  7. PendleStitches November 29, 2011 at 18:04 #

    Soup is the perfect food in Lancashire at this time of the year. I’m definitely making this one soon.

    • Chica Andaluza November 29, 2011 at 18:50 #

      I expect it´s a bit chillier where you are than where I am! But soup is always good I think and I can recommend this one.

      • PendleStitches November 30, 2011 at 16:58 #

        It’s freezing here! But it’s not raining, for which I’m eternally grateful! 😉

      • Chica Andaluza November 30, 2011 at 17:56 #

        Icy cold rain is the worst 😦 Even worse than snow I think!

  8. chaiselongue1 November 29, 2011 at 18:10 #

    Such a good winter recipe! And I’m sure it would be even better next day, and I love squeezing lemon juice and adding olive oil to stews like this….so it’s perfect! Had a bit of a surprise when I saw your new layout – I think the old one had a bit more space and simplicity, though. But it’s good to have a change sometimes!

    • Chica Andaluza November 29, 2011 at 18:51 #

      First of all thanks for the feedback on the new look – I´m probably going to play around with a bit over the next week or so…still undecided! And glad you liked the recipe – olive oil and lemon juice can transform a dish I think.

  9. ChgoJohn November 29, 2011 at 18:13 #

    A couple weeks ago, someone posted a lentil recipe and later that day I found myself in a grocery buying lentils, etc. I need to go run some errands in a few minutes, one of them being the grocer. WIthout any plans for dinner, and this being a cold, blustery day, I think I’ll be buying lentils again, especially considering I have everything else in your ingredient list. Thanks, Tanya, for the inspiration! 🙂

    • Chica Andaluza November 29, 2011 at 18:52 #

      You´re welcome – it won´t take too long to make, hope you enjoy it!

      • ChgoJohn November 30, 2011 at 17:28 #

        It was delicious!!!!!!!!!!

      • Chica Andaluza November 30, 2011 at 17:57 #

        Yay! Hope you have some leftovers 😉

  10. gardenfreshtomatoes November 29, 2011 at 18:38 #

    I LOVE lentils – and a few other Americans seem to be coming around…This is a lot like the lentil stew I make in the winter. It shows up often on our table.

    • Chica Andaluza November 29, 2011 at 18:53 #

      It´s a love or hate thing I find. Lots of young people in the UK hate them until they go off to University and then have to live on a budget – then they learn to love them!

  11. Christina November 29, 2011 at 18:42 #

    mmmmm….nothing better than lentil soup on a chilly day! I love the addition of the potatoes! 🙂

    • Chica Andaluza November 29, 2011 at 18:53 #

      I loved your recipe too! The potatoes make it stick to your ribs and keep you warm on the inside 🙂

  12. ceciliag November 29, 2011 at 19:06 #

    I love its name too, I am a great fan of eating out of a bowl with a spoon, John likes it too because then he can hunch over the bowl and just shovel it in. I know that is not a pretty thought but he does like his food! He will love this. I am sure i have lentils in the pantry too so i might get onto it !! .. c

    • Chica Andaluza November 29, 2011 at 19:20 #

      Shovelling is fine – as long as it is conducted between loved ones! Lentils are always a great standby…

  13. Megan November 29, 2011 at 20:09 #

    Ahhh, I remember eating this dish for lunch at least once or twice a week while living in Spain. I still think about it 🙂

    • Chica Andaluza November 29, 2011 at 20:19 #

      It´s definitely a “staple” here – and lots of restaurants offer it at midday on the “menú”. I love it!

  14. Just A Smidgen November 29, 2011 at 20:25 #

    Without your blog I would never have known that these were called “pulses”… I wonder where that word came from? Anyway, I love the new look of your blog:) and this looks like my kind of meal. Occasionally I throw tofu into stuff (shocks my husband) and I think I could try that with this one…

    • Chica Andaluza November 29, 2011 at 20:47 #

      I don´t know why they are called pulses either …will have to look into that! Thanks for the comment on the new look…it´s a work in progress 🙂 I think the tofu would work well with this and absorb all the flavours. It´s easily adaptable to a non meat version and still tastes great. At least, we think so!

  15. tedgriffith November 29, 2011 at 23:16 #

    This is very much like our version (ours is the vegetarian style). We have it at least once per month. My wife thinks I’m crazy, but I always add some crushed hot red chilis in my bowl.

    • Chica Andaluza November 29, 2011 at 23:28 #

      This is such a great vegetarian dish and I´d be joining you with the chillis!

  16. foodblogandthedog November 30, 2011 at 00:04 #

    I love your new look! Lentils are my fave at this time of year but I just saw Jamie doing a barley risotto and want to find some barley now, any ideas?! I emailed my friend Margarita about the olives but she has already given the rest of her olives to her neighbour to pickle as she never gets it right! Her oil this year is soo green though, I have ordered 10 litres, can’t wait!!

    • Chica Andaluza November 30, 2011 at 09:41 #

      Lucky you with the oil – it will be amazing! We will probably pick next week. As for Barley…well, I love tabbouleh made with barley but for more warming soups how about a spicy tomato and barley one? Do let me know if you find any! Am off to Gib (don´t like it but I want to do some shopping) on Friday, so should find some hard to get ingredients there.

  17. Bluejellybeans November 30, 2011 at 01:29 #

    New look! I like it 🙂
    Qué rica receta Tanya. Me encantan las lentejas y la sopa de lentejas es una de mis recetas favoritas de la infancia.
    Gracias por compartirla con nosotros 😉

    • Chica Andaluza November 30, 2011 at 09:42 #

      Muchisimas gracias – a nosotros nos encantan todos los platos de cuchara. Estoy haciendo puchero hoy!

  18. fati's recipes November 30, 2011 at 08:25 #

    Mmm… yes, I think some people said it already, WOW YOUR BLOG LOOKS SO DIFFERENT! 🙂
    But don’t listen to what I think because I don’t like change very often.. It’ll take me a few visits to get used to the blue 🙂 I LOVE the header pic, though 😀 I’m already used to it, hehe…

    And by the way, this soup’s looking amazing! Wouldn’t mind trying it some day…

    • Chica Andaluza November 30, 2011 at 09:43 #

      It´s funny that I chose blue – it´s not normally one of my colours but it seems to work well on a lot of other food blogs. Maybe I should google “what background colour complements food photography”! Hope I haven´t stressed you out with the changes 😦

  19. TBM November 30, 2011 at 09:48 #

    I love lentils! They make such a tasty soup!

  20. spicegirlfla November 30, 2011 at 15:50 #

    Where to begin…first I love the new look!! I’m looking at self-hosting but so confused with it all…did you also switch to self hosting?
    Secondly, I love a good lentil soup and this is one healthy, chunky gorgeous one!!

    • Chica Andaluza November 30, 2011 at 16:14 #

      Thanks for the kind words about the new look – I just chose a new theme (I think it´s called Bueno) but not self hosting. Pleased you like the recipe too, it´s one I make often 🙂

  21. Karen November 30, 2011 at 16:45 #

    I can’t believe that I cooked a similar dish last week and have it ready to be posted. When you see the photo you will notice how alike they are. I made mine into a risotto. Two cooks with very similar tastes. That’s a good thing!

    • Chica Andaluza November 30, 2011 at 17:56 #

      That´s a good thing indeed and I often have the same thing happen. I cook something and am about to post and then I see several others almost identical. Never mind though – I think it´s lovely to see everyone´s little twist on a seasonal dish! Looking forward to seeing yours soon.

  22. cityhippyfarmgirl November 30, 2011 at 21:59 #

    I’m always a fan of lentils. Cheap and tasty!
    This a lovely dish for cooler weather.

    • Chica Andaluza November 30, 2011 at 22:17 #

      It´s a great dish – as you say, cheap and tasty!

  23. sportsglutton December 1, 2011 at 00:07 #

    The picture almost looks like bbq baked beans (in a good way)…meaning it looks like a wonderfully savory dish. 🙂

    • Chica Andaluza December 1, 2011 at 08:20 #

      I agree – I am understand what you are saying! Now I am craving bbq baked beans 🙂

  24. Tandy December 1, 2011 at 10:42 #

    love the new theme – but not lentils!

    • Chica Andaluza December 1, 2011 at 13:39 #

      Thank you – but I know some people just can´t stomach lentils!!

  25. Sissi December 1, 2011 at 12:02 #

    Your stew looks so appealing that you make me want to change all the cooking plans for tonight! I love lentils and haven’t had them for such a long time (I have no idea why). I also appreciate them because they do not require soaking.
    Thank you for visiting my blog, I am very happy to discover yours. It seems fascinating and full of inspiring recipes.

    • Chica Andaluza December 1, 2011 at 15:00 #

      Well thanks for coming by my blog too! Glad you liked what you saw – love lentils and you´re right, they´re so much quicker than other pulses 🙂

  26. JamieAnne December 1, 2011 at 14:27 #

    Looks very tasty!!

  27. thefooddoctor December 3, 2011 at 20:22 #

    I love lentil stew..it is so warm and comforting

    • Chica Andaluza December 4, 2011 at 10:20 #

      It´s up there with mashed potato as comfort food 🙂

  28. Will - My Spanish Adventure December 9, 2011 at 15:03 #

    Hey Chica! Just want you to know I’m indebted to you and this recipe for keeping my vegetarian bones alive. I liked it so much I included it in my round-up of best Spanish travel posts for November over on my site!

    Hopefully you can come over and answer the questions I posed for you too!

    • Chica Andaluza December 9, 2011 at 15:33 #

      Thanks so much Will – I´m honoured! And now I´m off to your site to see what you´ve asked me 🙂

  29. Michi December 22, 2011 at 13:55 #

    Mmmmmm, one of my favorite “comidas de cuchara”!!

    • Chica Andaluza December 22, 2011 at 14:58 #

      It´s hard to explain the culture of this, but I hope I managed to explain how “we” Andaluces love our comida de cuchara!

  30. Fired Up Cooking SA January 12, 2012 at 19:59 #

    Hello Chica! Your lentil stew looks gorgeous, idea *saved* for cooler weather, and a camp-fire I think! Right now tho, it was 41 deg C here today, killer hot, so I’ll skip the comfort foods… I’m off to play some more blog catch-up now. See you soon 🙂

    PS I like your new look!

    • Chica Andaluza January 13, 2012 at 09:00 #

      Hi there and good to see you again! Not really the wether for you for stews and soups I think. I still find it funny to get my head around the differences from northern and southern hemisphere seasons 😉 Thanks for the kind words…


  1. Last day of November | olivesandartichokes - November 30, 2011

    […] three hours this usually takes, but when I saw the pork I immediately thought of Chica Andaluza’s lentil stew and, inspired by her, decided to create my own […]

  2. My Spanish Adventure » Blog Archive Best of the Spanish Travel Blogs: November - My Spanish Adventure - December 9, 2011

    […] Chica Andaluza: Potaje de Lentejas […]

  3. 2011 round up « Chef in disguise - December 31, 2011

    […] Tanya’s lentil stew […]

  4. Rendang Style Beef and time to catch up with myself… | Chica Andaluza - November 30, 2015

    […] It’s been quiet on the blog for a while. Spain was hectic and by the time we got back to England just over four weeks ago we made a conscious decision to take things a little more slowly for a while. Old favourites were made in the kitchen, lots of comforting chickpea stews and delicious bowls of Spanish style lentils. […]

  5. Feeling Fishy… | Chica Andaluza - January 9, 2017

    […] route works for us. We already enjoy pulses, so many meals are meat free, like our much loved lentils (minus the chorizo, or maybe just a little as we’re not being super strict, just making an […]

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