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  • Isabella Akshay

Macco di Lenticchie (Sicilian Cream of Lentils) & Zucchini Croquettes

Macco (or Maccu) is a traditional Sicilian dish belonging to the category of “Cucina Povera” (literally “poor kitchen” meaning peasant cooking).


It usually consists of dried peeled fava beans (broad beans) and wild fennel. I made a slightly different version using Sicilian red lentils instead.


I paired this delicious creamy soup with crunchy zucchini croquettes for a delicious substantial meal. (Also in the frame: homemade labneh).


Macco di Lenticchie


Ingredients (for 2)

  • 100g Sicilian dried red lentils

  • 1 large white onion, finely diced

  • 2 cloves garlic, finely minced

  • 1 small carrot, finely diced

  • 4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, divided

  • 1.5 l vegetable stock

  • A few sprigs of wild fennel (you can alternatively use dill, which looks almost identical but it’s a bit different in taste), chopped

  • A few sprigs of fresh parsley (optional), chopped

  • Salt and pepper to taste

Method


Heat 2 tbsp of the oil in a deep pot and add the onion and garlic. Sauté till the onion if golden, then add the diced carrot and lentils. Give it a mix and season with salt and pepper.


Add the stock and cook, covered, for about 40 minutes or until the lentils become of a creamy consistency. You can use an immersion blender to blend to a smooth consistency or use a potato masher if you prefer a chunkier texture.


Add the wild fennel and serve topped with the remaining olive oil. You can have this on its own, or with some bread or pasta.


Zucchini Croquettes


Ingredients (for 2)

  • 2 zucchini, grated

  • ±2 tbsp chickpea flour

  • ±2 tbsp oat bran

  • 2 sprigs fresh mint, finely chopped

  • Salt and pepper to taste


Method


(NOTE: adjust the quantity of flour and oat bran according to the size and moisture of your zucchini)


Squeeze as much moisture out of the zucchini as you can. Use a muslin or kitchen towel for this.


Transfer them to a bowl and mix with the remaining ingredients. Adjust the quantity of chickpea flour and oat bran as needed. It will vary based on the size of the zucchini and the moisture they have retained.


Form small croquettes by squeezing the mixture in your palm making sure it holds its shape. Then shallow-fry or bake with a little oil.


Word of the Day


Lenticchie

(Lentils, pronounced len·tìc·chie)


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