- 2 bunches Swiss chard
- 1 bunch beet greens
- ½ cup olive oil
- ¾ cup diced onion
- ¾ cup diced carrots
- ¾ cup diced celery
- 1 pound French lentils, rinsed well and picked over
- 8 cups Emeril's All Natural Vegetable Stock, homemade vegetable stock, or low sodium chicken broth
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 teaspoons salt, plus more for seasoning
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more for seasoning
- ½ cup small-diced red bell pepper
- ½ cup small-diced yellow bell pepper
- ½ cup chopped parsley
- 6 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons thinly sliced garlic
- ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 6 to 8 large eggs, at room temperature
- Lemon halves or fresh lemon juice, for serving
Wash the Swiss chard and beet greens well. Pat dry. Cut the ribs from the leaves, chop into ½-inch pieces, and set aside. Cut the leaves into 1-inch strips and reserve separately.
Heat 3 tablespoons of the olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium high heat. When hot, add the onions, carrots, celery and reserved chard and beet ribs, and cook, stirring, for 4 minutes. Add the lentils, 7 ½ cups of the vegetable stock, bay leaf, 1 ½ teaspoons salt and the black pepper. Bring to a simmer and cook uncovered, stirring occasionally, until lentils are just tender, about 30 minutes. Take care not to overcook or lentils will become mushy. Set lentils aside to cool to lukewarm in the cooking liquid, then strain in a colander and discard the cooking liquid. Place the warm lentils in a bowl and add the red and yellow bell peppers, parsley, balsamic vinegar and the extra virgin olive oil. Toss well to combine and adjust seasoning if necessary.
In a large skillet over medium heat, add 3 tablespoons of the remaining olive oil. When hot, add the garlic and crushed red pepper and cook until fragrant, 30 to 45 seconds. Add the chard and beet greens, in batches, stirring between additions, until the greens wilt slightly. Cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Add the remaining stock and remaining ½ teaspoon of salt and continue to cook until greens are just tender, 3 to 4 minutes longer.
Adjust seasoning if necessary and allow to cool to room temperature before serving. When ready to serve, cook the eggs. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium low heat. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil and gently crack 4 of the eggs in the skillet. Season lightly with salt and pepper to taste and cook, undisturbed, until the white is set, 3 to 4 minutes. Remove the eggs from the pan and repeat with the remaining eggs.
Serve the lentils in shallow bowls, topped with an egg and garnished with the wilted greens. Drizzle with lemon juice to taste and serve immediately.
Yield: 2 quarts, 6 to 8 servings