- ¼ cup olive oil
- 2 medium yellow onions (about 1 ½ lb.), finely chopped
- 1 cup brown or green lentils, picked over for stones and other debris
- ½ cup basmati rice
- 1/2 tsp cumin
- 1/4 tsp cinnamon
- 1 clove of garlic, minced
- 1 tbsp salt, plus more for serving
In a large (12-inch) sauté pan or skillet or a Dutch oven, warm the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until they are deeply caramelized, a rich shade of amber. If they’re burnt and blackened in spots, even better. This is a fairly slow process. This should take 30 minutes to 1 hour
While the onions are cooking, place the lentils in a medium saucepan, add water to cover by an inch, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce to a simmer and cook, undisturbed, for 20 minutes. Drain the lentils, and set them aside.
When the onions are ready, stir in the rice. Then add the cooked lentils, along with 2 cups of water, spices and garlic, and the salt. Stir to mix well, and bring the pan to a boil. Reduce the heat to keep the pan at a slow simmer, cover, and cook.
After about 20 minutes, remove the lid, and give the pot a gentle stir. If there is still some liquid visible, replace the lid and keep cooking until it is fully absorbed. On the other hand, if there is no obvious liquid, take a taste. If the rice is tender, the mujadara is ready. If the rice is not yet ready, add another splash of water, replace the lid, and cook until the liquid is absorbed and the rice is cooked.