Lentils and Roasted Peppers Tartine
You may have noticed that I am a tartine fan. If it’s on bread, I love it. Tartine is simply a slice of grilled bread with a topping and you can find a few of the tartines I have posted here. I mentioned in another post that Holt’s Cafe in Toronto has some lovely tartines on their menu made with Poilane breads from Paris and whenever I am in Toronto I go to Holt’s for one of their tartines (let’s face it, it’s the clothes and shoes too). I used to have bread shipped to me from Paris (a little crazy, I know) from the famed Poilane bakery on Rue du Cherche-Midi, but I kind of stopped doing that a while ago. There is a limit.
This tartine is one I make quite regularly if I have the ingredients. It’s simple, delicious and fits perfectly into my vegetarian cooking style. I make it with green or brown lentils or with the French du Puy lentils as well. It really lends itself to any of these types of legumes. Brown and green lentils will be softer and creamier, while du Puy tend to hold their shape more and remain a bit chewy.
For the grilled bread use a nice rustic bread from a bakery that makes good country style breads. I slice it, brush with olive oil, grill it and then rub it with a garlic clove. The bread then serve as a base for the simply cooked lentils and roasted cherry tomatoes. Finish the plate with a drizzle of olive oil and a scattering of goat cheese.
1 cup lentils
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 shallots, chopped
1 tablespoon fresh thyme, chopped
1 teaspoon coarse salt
3 cups vegetable stock (can replace 1 cup with wine)
Roasted cherry tomatoes:
2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon sugar
Rinse lentils under running water, then place in a bowl, cover with water and let soak for 20 minutes.
Heat oil in a pan, add shallots and cook for a couple of minutes until fragrant.
Add thyme, salt and lentils and stir for a minute.
Add the stock and wine if using and bring to a boil.
Lower heat to a simmer, cook partially covered until lentils are cooked through but not mushy. They should still hold their shape. The liquid should be more or less absorbed when the lentils are cooked through.
When lentils are done transfer to a bowl and add the roasted cherry tomatoes.
Add a handful of chopped flat leaf parsley or cilantro.
To grill the bread: brush the bread slices with olive oil and grill in a panini maker or a skillet. Rub the grilled bread with a clove of garlic if you wish.
To serve: lay a slice of bread on each plate, top with the lentils and grilled tomatoes.
Garnish with chopped parsley and scatter some cheese on top if you wish.
To roast the cherry tomatoes: cut the tomatoes in half and toss with the oil, sugar and salt.
Cover a baking sheet with foil and spread the tomatoes over the sheet in one layer.
Roast in 375℉ oven until tomatoes are crinkled and semi dehydrated.