Married to the Empire

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Lentil-Rice Casserole--Mexican Style

I'm sure I've mentioned before that I try to cook some vegetarian meals due to my husband's kidney disease. He's generally not happy about meatless meals, but he eats them. One recipe that I really like, but he doesn't, is the lentil-rice casserole from The Complete Tightwad Gazette. It's quick and easy to do in the crockpot, which is one of many reasons I like it. (That, and I think it tastes good, but if the hubby won't touch it again after the initial meal, what's the point?)

I was in a bind yesterday afternoon, as I realized I hadn't planned for dinner. Oops. I decided on this casserole, but then had an idea. I decided to try it Mexican style. Then I told Steven that if it was awful, we'd grab Taco Bell or something.

When he tried it, he exclaimed, "Oh, this is really good!" Then he later told me he was stuffed. Yep, it was that good.

Mexican Lentil-Rice Casserole

1/2 cup rice
3/4 cup lentils
1 can Rotel, plus enough water to equal 3 cups
1/2 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. chili powder
1/4 tsp. garlic powder*

Put it all in a crockpot, turn it on high, and cook for approximately 3 hours. Serve topped with shredded cheddar cheese.
*You may not actually need the garlic powder if your chili powder has garlic in it, as most do. I use a specialty chili powder that does not have garlic, which is why I added it.


Rhonda said...

looks good to me. I've got 3 kinds of lentils in the pantry, I think I will add this to our menu this week.
thank you

Joanne Brown said...

Looks yummy! I need to start using my crockpot more, especially when I go back to work next week!!

Catherine said...

I finally made this last night and it was DELICIOUS! However, I cooked it on low for 8 hours and then another 1/2 hour on high. The lentils were still crunchy. Are they supposed to be crunchy? It was still good, though, and I served it nacho-style over tortilla chips.

Anne Marie@Married to the Empire said...

Catherine, no, the lentils should not be crunchy! I know that any time I cook beans in the crockpot, the directions always say to do them on high, so I suspect that may have been the problem. I know that lentils traditionally have a much shorter cooking time than beans, but perhaps doing them on low in a crockpot doesn't work. That's my guess. Glad you liked it in spite of the crunchy lentils!

Catherine said...

Next time I will try cooking the lentils a bit in advance to see if that works. Or at least make this on the weekend instead. It was very good leftover for lunch today!