‘Simple but delicious recipes such as this are essential for your repertoire if you want to cook spontaneously and easily. I’d happily give this warm, satisfying salad to friends as a starter or supper dish with a crisp chicory salad. Equally, I would gladly feed it to my family for a fast mid-week supper, knowing they’ll all love it. If you crave meat, serve it with some crispy streaky bacon crumbled on top or studded with a little fried chorizo. You could also have it as a vegetable with grilled chicken. Whichever way you choose, you’ll be in for a treat’

Thomasina Miers

Pardina lentils with soft goat’s cheese and sherry vinegar

Extract from José Pizarro’s

Spanish Flavours
Published by Kyle Books

Pardina lentils, from Castile y Leon, are brown lentils that don’t lose their skin or their bite. Use puy lentils as an alternative.

Serves 4

Ingredients

350g pardina lentils
6 garlic cloves, 3 finely
chopped and 3 left whole
3 fresh bay leaves
6tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra to serve
2 medium red onions, finely chopped
1½tsp caster sugar
125g sun-dried tomatoes in
oil, drained and chopped
12 spring onions, trimmed
and thinly sliced
3tbsp chopped flat-leaf parsley
2tbsp sweet Pedro Ximénez or balsamic sherry vinegar,
plus extra to serve
150g-200g soft rindless
goat’s cheese, sliced
Sea salt and freshly ground
black pepper

Method

Put the lentils, the 3 whole garlic cloves and bay leaves into a pan and cover by 5cm with cold water. Bring to the boil and simmer for 20 minutes. Add 1 teaspoon of salt and continue to cook for another 10 minutes until just tender but still a little al punto-with a little bite. Drain, reserving the cooking liquid. Remove and discard the garlic cloves and bay leaves.

Heat half the olive oil in a deep frying pan, add the onions and sugar and fry gently for 5-6 minutes until soft. Add the chopped garlic and fry for a further 1-2 minutes. Stir in the warm cooked lentils and 150ml of the cooking liquid, the sun-dried tomatoes, spring onions, parsley, vinegar and salt and pepper to taste. Bring back to a gentle simmer.

Spoon the lentils into shallow bowls and crumble the goat’s cheese slices on top. Drizzle over a little more olive oil and Pedro Ximénez sherry vinegar and serve.

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