This is another one of those recipes that is not really a recipe and is a great way to use up any odds and ends of vegetables that are left in the fridge. So the recipe is modified based on what vegetables are in season, and you can make it spicy or not. Other than that it just uses dry or canned things that can be kept in bulk, so it is also a good dish to make if there isn't much else in. I just kind of threw it together on just such an occasion well over a year ago now, and it has turned into one of our staple dishes that we make all the time and never tire of. I must also warn you that it can be slightly addictive, as it feels like you are eating pure goodness in a bowl!
For those of you who may not be acquainted with quinoa (pronounced 'keen-wah'), it is a great 'grain' (pseudocereal, actually) originating in the Andes that is a very complete source of protein and is high in fiber, phosphorus, magnesium and iron. Combine that with green lentils, kidney beans and fresh vegetables and you could hardly get a healthier meal!
Quinoa and Lentil Stew
Seasonal leftover vegetables (here I had carrots, spring onions and leeks, but in the summer we used aubergine and courgette, etc)
(Lardons can be used too)
Coriander seed, cumin seed, ground coriander, chili powder, black pepper
1 large can of peeled tomatoes
1 small can kidney beans
(I also threw in a can of chickpeas this time, which I'd never tried before but was really nice)
Chicken stock (or water + stock cube)
If you are using lardons, start with those in a large pot, then chop all your vegetables and add onion first with some olive oil along with all the spices and salt. Add the rest of the vegetables and let them fry up for a while, then add the green lentils. Next add the can of tomatoes, squishing them up with your fingers and removing any tough bits. Add hot chicken stock (or boiling water and a stock cube) to fill up most of the rest of the pot. Let this simmer on the stove uncovered to reduce some of the liquid off for about a half an hour, then add the quinoa and the can of beans and/or chickpeas and continue to cook until everything is tender (covered or uncovered, depending on how much liquid is still in the stew).
Eat as is or topped with grated cheddar cheese, or parmesan, or even fresh goat's cheese.