Koushari is an Egyptian popular food, so popular in fact that it is commonly sold in the streets.
Its main components are rice, lentil, macaroni, and caramelized onion coated in tomato paste.
I personally find that the macaroni in the koushari looks somewhat crass, so I used vermicelli to refine it a bit.
It is fairly straight forward: boil the lentils, boil the vermicelli (aka: angel hair), cook the rice, and caramelize the onion. The only thing that requires time and attention is the onions, which cannot be rushed and take up to an hour.
Adapted from The Middle East Cookbook by Tess Mallos
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 cup tomato paste
1 cup rice
1 cup brown lentils
1 cup vermicelli
Over medium heat, saute the onion in the olive oil until completely caramelized and verging on crispy.
This may take up to an hour.
Add the tomato paste and stir to combine. Set aside.
Boil the lentils for 30 to 40 minutes in excess salted water, drain, set aside.
Cook the rice in a knob of butter or oil, a teaspoon of salt, and enough boiling water just to cover.
Cover the pot and leave over low heat for 20 minutes until the rice is cooked and absorbed all the water.
Cook the vermicelli for 3 minutes in boiling water.
Gently mix the rice, lentils, vermicelli, and tomatoed onions until incorporated.
Delicious with some minted yogurt.
صحة و عافية