Ingredients

200g brown lentils, washed and drained
1 onion, quartered
12 cloves garlic
1 bay leaf
1 large sprig of thyme
¼ cup tahini
½ teaspoon salt
1-2 teaspoons miso paste (optional)
3 tablespoons lemon juice
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large eggplant
20 pitted green olives
15 small cherry tomatoes
¼ cup finely chopped herbs (I used a mix of parsley, coriander, & mint)
2 teaspoons sumac
For a different twist on hummus try this lentil version. Lentils are quicker to cook, though they don’t have the nuttiness of chickpeas, so load the top with well-roasted additions such as eggplant. If you just want to serve the hummus plain, I suggest giving it that flavour boost by roasting the eggplant and garlic and adding them to the lentils when you blend.

Instructions

1.Put the lentils, onion, 1 clove of garlic, the bay and thyme in a pot and cover with plenty of water.
2.Bring to the boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook until the lentils are tender, about 20 minutes.
3.Drain and set aside until cool enough to handle, then discard the onion and herbs (don’t worry if you leave a bit of onion).
4.Put the lentils into a food processor and blend to a fine purée, scraping down the sides.
5.Add the tahini, salt, miso paste if using and lemon juice and continue to blend, while adding 2 tablespoons of the extra virgin olive oil, until smooth.
6.Store in a covered container in the fridge for up to four days.
7.Preheat the oven to 200°C.
8.Cut the ends off the 11 remaining garlic cloves, leaving them unpeeled.
9.Put into a small saucepan, cover with water and bring to the boil.
10.Drain well, then peel.
11.Put the 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a roasting pan with the garlic cloves.
12.Cut the eggplant into cubes of about 2cm, add to the pan with a good sprinkle of salt and toss well.
13.Roast for 10 minutes then add the olives and roast for a further 5 minutes.
14.Finally, add the tomatoes for the last 5 minutes.
15.Spread the hummus onto a serving plate and top with the roasted eggplant, olives and tomatoes.
16.Scatter with herbs, sumac and the last tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil.
17.Serve as part of a platter with vegetables and crackers or simply with flatbreads.

Recipes & food styling Fiona Smith / Photography Aaron McLean / Styling Fiona Lascelles

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