I think I could make Mujadarah in my sleep. Okay, maybe I haven’t actually cooked it as often as challah or spinach pie or butter cookies, but this dish is a mainstay in the Fein household. I serve it when my kids come. Sometimes I make a small portion for just Ed and me. But mostly I serve it for buffet dinners, like when a grandchild is born and we have a welcome party.
And it has become a permanent item for my Yom Kippur Break-the-fast.
The first time I served Mujadarah at my Break-the-fast, people wondered what it was and took a little taste, then came back for more. Much more. The next year I doubled the amount I served.
Mujadarah is a Middle Eastern specialty. This version has brown rice but you could substitute bulgur wheat. I make it well ahead of time, separately store the grains and onions in the fridge, then reheat them separately too. That makes it really easy for me when I have a lot of guests over.
BROWN RICE MUJADARAH
1/2 cup olive oil
4 large yellow onions, peeled and sliced
1 cup brown rice
1 cup lentils
water or stock
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
salt to taste
Heat 4 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large sauté pan over low-medium heat. Add the onions and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 20 minutes or until the onions are soft and brown. Set aside. If not serving the dish immediately, spoon the onions into a container and cover the container. Refrigerate when cool. Place the rice in a saucepan, cover with 2 cups water or stock, bring to a boil, stir and cover the pan. Turn the heat to low and cook for about 30 minutes or until tender. Spoon the rice into a bowl. While the rice is cooking, place the lentils in a saucepan and cover with water or stock. Bring to a boil over high heat. Lower the heat, cover the pan and cook for about 25 minutes or until tender. Drain and set aside. Stir in the remaining 4 tablespoons olive oil. Add the parsley and toss the ingredients. Add salt to taste. If serving immediately, stir in the onions with any accumulated juices. If serving at a later time, stir in the onions and juices, cover the pan and reheat in a covered baking dish in a preheated 350 degree oven.
Makes 4 servings