Friday, 6 January 2012

Puy Lentil Galettes

After being a committed vegetarian for almost a week now, I'm constantly trying to widen my repertoire. However, today I have noticed that despite having cupboards and shelves full of all sorts of spices, pastes etc, I'm still lacking 'essential items' like Sumac, Za'atar and Pomegranate molasses. A shopping trip to the Middle East is therefore due. In the meantime, I had to settle for a dish courtesy of Yotam Ottolenghi. I think that this would work equally well for lunch accompanied by a cold, crisp glass of white wine. The end result resembles an Eastern Mediterranean style vol-au-vent as pictured below. For two people, the cost is approx £2.50 per head, the most expensive thing being the herbs!

Ingredients : 100g puy lentils, 2 bay leaves, 1tsp cumin seeds / coriander seeds. 2 tbsp olive oil, small chopped onion, 2 garlic cloves crushed, 100g Greek Yogurt, handful of chopped mint / coriander, 1tbsp lemon juice, sheet of puff pastry, beaten egg, salt & pepper

1. Dry fry the seeds in a pan until aromatic. Grind down in a pestle & mortar.
2. Roll out the pasty and cut into 8cm circles. Chill for 20 minutes. Heat oven to 200/gas mark 6.
3. Cook lentils in 500ml of boiling water with the bay leaf until tender.
4. Gently fry the onion in half of the oil until soft. Add the spices, garlic and cook for 2 minutes.
5. Add the cooked lentils and leave to cool.
6. Brush the pastry with the egg wash and bake for 10-15 minutes or until crisp.
7. Stir in the yogurt, spinach, herbs, remaining oil and lemon juice to the lentil mix. Season to taste.
8. To serve, arrange pastry on a plate and pile high with the topping.

The lentil mix is fine on its own and would make an excellent accompaniment to some char grilled lamb. But the crisp pastry is what brings this dish together. You could even make smaller versions and serve as a starter/canape.

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