One of Rob’s favorite cookbooks is Pasta by Vincenzo Buonassisi. This is one of his prized cookbooks. Each recipe is flawless. When we had some leftover lentils in the refrigerator, he opened this book and found the perfect recipe! The English translation leaves a lot to be desired, but I’ll print it just as the cookbook writes it with my notes in brackets. You may have to read it a few times, but you’ll get the idea!
- 1 lb. tubettini or other tubed pasta [any short, tubed pasta is fine]
- 3/4 lb lentils [can be leftovers]
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 stick celery
- salt and pepper
- stock [vegetable or chicken]
- olive oil
Soak the lentils for at least 12 hours and cook with plenty of salted water, chopped garlic or whole cloves of garlic which you discard before serving [We used leftover lentils that were in the fridge], and the chopped celery.
Cook over a moderate heat, adding more liquid if necessary. When almost done add the pasta and cook until al dente.
Put all the ingredients in a serving bowl and add fresh olive oil and freshly ground black pepper; you should have a good thick soup.
Another way of cooking the lentils is to boil them without the vegetables and when they begin to soften remove from heat and carefully drain off most of the water. Add fresh boiling water, return to the heat and after a few minutes add the rest of the ingredients. [This is how we would recommend proceeding]
[We also put in some carrot, leeks, fennel and onion.]