ABOUT NAVA's RECIPE:
As satisfying as any kind of burger, these BBQ-Flavored Lentil Sloppy Joes are ready in minutes if you have lentils cooked and ready. There’s also the option of using canned lentils, because many of us, including yours truly, never seem to remember to cook them ahead of time. Not that they take as long as other legume, but still, canned lentils save you that valuable 30 to 40 minutes when you need to get a meal on the table. Accompany with sautéed golden potatoes and a green vegetable, plus some diced small tomatoes. Or serve with a platter of raw veggies and a dip.
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
6 to 8 ounces cremini (baby bella) or white mushrooms, cleaned, stemmed, and chopped
Two 15-ounce cans lentils, drained and rinsed, or 3 cups cooked (see tips, page 000)
1 cup bottled barbecue sauce, your favorite natural variety, or
Super-Quick No-Cook BBQ Sauce, plus more, as needed
Freshly ground pepper to taste
Dried hot red pepper flakes or siracha to taste, optional
Burger buns, small ciabatta breads, or English muffins
Heat the oil in a large skillet. Add the onion and sauté over low heat until golden.
Add the mushrooms. Cover and cook over medium heat until wilted, about 3 to 4 minutes.
Add the lentils, barbecue sauce, a few grindings of pepper, and optional hot seasoning.
Bring to a simmer, then cook over low heat, uncovered, for 10 minutes, or until everything is piping hot. The liquid should be thickened and enveloping the lentils and mushrooms nicely. If you’d like the mixture to be saucier, add 1/4 to 1/2 cup more barbecue sauce.
For each serving, spoon some of the filling onto the bread of your choice and serve open face.
Barbecue seasoning is available in the spice section of most supermarkets. Varieties include smokehouse maple, mesquite, chipotle, and there are lots of others. Discover your favorites, and keep a couple on hand.