Holidays like Easter or Christmas are an excellent occasion to heat up the kitchen. This year I spent most of the Easter time outside but still found enough time for tasty creations in the evening. The recipe I want to share with you today is an adoption by Christian Rindfleisch, a chef from Hamburg. I coincidentally came across the recipe in a magazine a little while ago. If you happen to be a Hamburg local, don’t miss out on his cuisine in his restaurant (www.roeperhof-restaurant.de). I am sure it is worth a visit.
Before I present you a quite extensive list of ingredients and cooking instructions, I would like to advice you to plan about 1 hour for the preparation of this meal. And please make sure that you have at least two small pots, a pan and a sauce blender at hand. You will work with two different sauces, the meat and lentils which requires a little juggling around in the kitchen. So take the time to read through the recipe 2 or 3 times before you start to get the order of the different steps right. If you have a friend or your partner around, I recommend to use them as your assistant for chopping and cleaning the veggies. With a glass of wine or beer next to you and some good music, this cooking action will be fun.
What you will come out with is a very tasty, colorful and light meal that you and your guests will enjoy!
Ingredients (serves 4 people):
250 g or 1/2 pound shrimps
2 smoked sausages
350g red lentils
20g popped amaranth
500 ml carrot juice
1 can coconut milk (400 ml)
2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar
2 parsnips (alternatively a celery head)
4 small onions or 3-4 shallots
1 large garlic clove
1 red chilli
1 small piece ginger root (about 3 cm or 1 inch long)
250 g or 1/2 pound cocktail tomatoes
salt, pepper, thyme, a rosemary bunch, bay leaves, sugar
veggie broth (powder or cube)
canola oil for frying
butter for the sauce and for frying (max. 50g)
1) Peel the carrot, the parsnip, the onions, ginger and garlic. Wash the chilli. Proceed with chopping everything up into small pieces and make separate piles of each.
2) In a pot, bring 500 ml veggie broth to a boil. At the same time, start preheating a pan with a sip of oil and sauté half of the onion until glassy. Add the lentils for about 1-2 minutes and continue sautéing the mix. Deglaze with balsamic vinegar. Then add the lentils to the veggie broth and let boil at medium heat for about 10 min (or as indicated on the lentil package). You can start with the preparation of the shrimps and sausage at this point (see below).
3) As soon as the cooking time is over and the water has evaporated, mix in a handful parsnip pieces and the carrot pieces. Keep on stirring for 2-3 min at medium heat. At the end, season the lentils with a teaspoon salt and sugar, a teaspoon thyme and 2-3 bay leaves. Cover with a lid, put aside and continue with the sauces.
Baked shrimps & sausage
1) If you purchased frozen shrimps, take them out of the freezer and defrost them a few hours prior to cooking. Slice the sausage.
2) In a pan, preheat a sip of oil. At the same time, start preheating your oven. Then saute the garlic and a quarter of the onions in the pan. Add the shrimps and sausage and stir a few minutes. Then transfer the shrimps and sausage to the oven, add a rosemary twig and bake them at high heat until you are done with the remaining cooking.
3) Drizzle with lemon juice right before serving.
1) In a small pot, saute the remaining onion. Add the carrot juice, 2 tablespoons coconut milk and a tablespoon butter. Process in a blender until foamy. The texture of the sauce should be liquid.
1) In another small pot, boil the remaining parsnip pieces in veggie broth until they are soft (5-10 min).
2) Add the remaining coconut milk as well as the ginger and chilli pieces. Process the sauce in a blender. The sauce should be rather firm and not liquid in texture. You should be able to scoop it with a spoon.
1) In a small sauce pan, heat up 1 inch of oil. Add the amaranth and wait until it pops. Immediately take it out of the oil with a spoon and place it into a small bowl or cup. You will use it for decoration when arranging the plate.
How to arrange the plate
As soon as your lentils are cooked, the shrimps & sausage are baked and your sauces are done, you start with spreading a layer of lentils on a large white plate. On top of the lentils, place the shrimps & sausage. Spread small piles of parsnip sauce around the lentils. Then pour a layer of carrot sauce around the plate. Add a few cocktail tomatoes and top with popped amaranth.