Lentils, radic­chio and wal­nuts with manuka honey

The Observer Food Monthly - - CONTENTS - Yo­tam Ot­tolenghi

Manuka honey is ex­pen­sive and not avail­able ev­ery­where, so you can sub­sti­tute it with Scot­tish

heather honey or an­other strong va­ri­ety. Radic­chio’s bit­ter­ness of­fers the right bal­ance to the rich sweet­ness of honey, but if this isn’t to your taste you can leave it out or re­place it with red en­dive. Serves 4 puy lentils 200g bay leaves 2 red-wine vine­gar 3 tbsp olive oil 90ml manuka honey 100g wal­nuts 100g chilli flakes ¼ tsp ground turmeric ½ tsp radic­chio ½ medium, or 2 red en­dives, quar­tered length­ways (120g) pecorino fiore sardo or goat’s cheese 60g, shaved basil 20g, roughly chopped dill 20g, roughly chopped pars­ley 20g, roughly chopped salt and black pep­per


Pre­heat the oven to 170C/gas mark 3½. Place the lentils in a medium saucepan, cover with plenty of wa­ter, add the bay leaves and sim­mer for 20 min­utes or un­til ten­der. Drain well and re­turn to the pan.

Whisk to­gether the vine­gar, half the oil, half the honey, ¾ tea­spoon of salt and some black pep­per un­til the honey dis­solves. Stir into the lentils, while they are still hot, and leave to cool down a lit­tle, dis­card­ing the bay leaves.

While you are cook­ing the lentils, pre­pare the wal­nuts. Put the re­main­ing honey, chilli flakes, turmeric and ¼ tea­spoon of salt in a small bowl. Mix well, adding just enough wa­ter – about 1 tea­spoon – to cre­ate a thick paste. Add the wal­nuts and stir un­til well coated. Spread them out on a bak­ing sheet lined with bak­ing parch­ment and roast for about 20 min­utes, stir­ring once, un­til golden and crunchy but still a lit­tle sticky.

Re­move from the oven and set aside, re­mov­ing the wal­nuts from the bak­ing parch­ment as soon as they are cool enough to touch.

To cook the radic­chio, pour the re­main­ing oil into a medium fry­ing pan and place on high heat. Cut the radic­chio into 8 long wedges and place in the hot oil. Cook for about a minute on each side and trans­fer to a large mix­ing bowl. Add the lentils, wal­nuts, pecorino and herbs. Stir gen­tly and spoon into a Tup­per­ware or tif­fin. When you get to work, re­frig­er­ate if pos­si­ble, but take it out 30 min­utes be­fore lunchtime.

Lentils, radic­chio and wal­nuts with manuka honey

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