Koshari is an Egyptian dish made with rice, lentils, macaroni, vermicelli and chickpeas and topped with a tomato sauce and fried onions. I've had it quite a few times as street food and have totally fallen in love with the dish. What scared me off making it myself previously, was the amount of components. I was basically fearing I wouldn't have enough pots to cook everything separately. Now I felt brave enough and started making Koshari. It turned out that it wasn't such a horrible multi-tasking exercise, but quite straight forward instead, as most of the processes are simple. I used for example ready made fried onions to save that stage. There can be several variations of Koshari and the below recipe is my version of the dish.
1 small onion
3 garlic cloves
1 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp tomato purée
Ground black pepper
1 cup brown rice
1 cup puy lentils
1 cup macaroni
1 cup vermicelli pasta
1 can chickpeas
2 vegetable stock cubes
½ tsp smoked paprika
First make the tomato sauce. Chop the onion and garlic cloves finely, cook them in olive oil, add the tomatoes and cook slowly under lid. Season to taste. Add more chilli flakes and other seasoning, if you prefer a very spicy sauce. When the sauce is almost done, start with the other preparations.
Cook the rice and the lentils with a vegetable stock cube each in separate pots. Basically everything is cooked separately and layered into a bowl in the end.
Cook the macaroni and vermicelli (break the vermicelli into about 1 cm long pieces first).
Warm the chickpeas up and season them with smoked paprika. Normally I would use dried chickpeas, but this time I chose the canned ones in order to save some additional cooking time.
Layer the components, top with tomato sauce and fried onions and enjoy.
This dish is also my contribution to this month's My Legume Love Affair (MLLA) #86 cooking challenge. It's hosted this month by Shaheen from Allotment 2 Kitchen. MLLA was started by Susan from The Well Seasoned Cook and now administered by Lisa from Lisa's Kitchen. I thought that koshari would be a suitable dish to this challenge, as it's quite rich on lentils and puy lentils.
Have a good week everyone!