Creamy Tahini Lentils with Rye Flatbreads

Creamy Tahini Lentils with Rye Flatbreads

Serves 3-4

For the Creamy Tahini Lentils 

2 tablespoons olive oil 
3 tablespoons thinly sliced green garlic (or 2-3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced) 
½ yellow onion, diced or thinly sliced 
1 teaspoon cumin seed, ground 
1 teaspoon coriander seed, ground 
1 cup pardina (brown) or du puy (green) lentils 
3 ¼ cups water, divided 
¼ cup tahini 
2 tablespoons lemon juice  
Sumac, to finish (optional)
Cilantro leaves, to garnish (optional)
Pickled Mustard Seeds, to garnish (optional)

In a large dutch oven or sauce pot, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add your garlic, onions, and a pinch of salt. Cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring often, then add cumin and coriander. Continue cooking and stirring for another 2-3 minutes, or until onions are turning translucent and spices are fragrant. 

Rinse your lentils under cold water, and add them to the pot along with 2 ½ cups of the water. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer and cover the pot with a lid, leaving it slightly ajar. Cook for 20-25 minutes or until lentils are tender. Meanwhile, combine the remaining ¾ cup water and ¼ cup tahini in a medium bowl and whisk together (it’s ok if this mixture doesn’t get completely incorporated since everything will come together in the pot). 

Once the lentils are tender, add the tahini mixture, 1 teaspoon of salt, and 2 tablespoons lemon juice. Stir everything together until combined and let simmer for an additional 5-7 minutes so most of the liquid has disappeared. Season to taste with additional salt and lemon juice as needed. Note: If making this ahead of time, you may want to thin the lentils out with a bit of water when you reheat. Just stir everything together and adjust seasoning as necessary. 

Serve in a bowl with a drizzle of olive oil, a sprinkle of sumac, a few spoons of pickled mustard seeds, and a handful of cilantro leaves to garnish. 

For the Rye Flatbreads

(makes 8 5” flatbreads) 

¾ teaspoon active dry yeast 
¾ teaspoon cane or coconut sugar
½ cup (120 ml) warm water (100-115ºF) 
110 g all purpose flour, plus more for working the dough
110 g rye flour 
1 ½ teaspoons salt 
1 teaspoons toasted & ground coriander or fennel seed (or a mix)
¼ teaspoon black pepper 
3 tablespoons (33 g) olive oil 
4 ½ teaspoons (35 g) plain yogurt  
Grapeseed or avocado oil for cooking 

In a small bowl, whisk together yeast, sugar, and water. Set aside for 10 minutes or until yeast begins to foam. 

Whisk together the salt, coriander, pepper, and flours in a large bowl, then add the yeast mixture, olive oil, and yogurt. Mix together with a fork until well combined, then turn the dough out onto a lightly floured countertop or work surface. Wet your hands and knead by folding the dough on top of itself until smooth, about 4-5 minutes. 

Lightly oil all sides of a large bowl, and add your dough. Cover with plastic wrap and leave on the counter for 1½-2 hours, or until dough has roughly doubled in volume. 

Push the dough down in the bowl to deflate it, and turn the dough onto a lightly floured work surface. Knead again as before for a minute or two. Cut dough into 8 equal pieces, and roll each into a ball. Re-flour your surface, and use a rolling pin (or wine bottle!) to get each dough piece into a roughly ⅛” thick round. 

Heat a large skillet (ideally a heavy bottomed cast iron) over medium high heat. Add a bit of grapeseed or avocado oil, and swirl the pan so it’s evenly distributed. Once the oil is hot, put one of the rounds (or two if your skillet is big enough) into the skillet and cook for 2 minutes or until the surface begins to bubble and the bottom is browning. Flip and cook the second side for another 1-2 minutes. Repeat with the remaining breads, adding more oil and adjusting the heat as necessary to keep oil from smoking. 

You can keep the breads hot by setting them in a 250º F oven or reheat them quickly in a skillet before serving. These can be made a day or two in advance and stored in the fridge, then reheated in a skillet or the oven immediately before serving. 

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