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Puy Lentil & Aubergine Stew

Serves 2-4 (as a side)

3 tbsp olive oil plus a little extra to serve
3 garlic cloves, finely sliced
1 large red onion, finely chopped
½ tbsp thyme leaves
2 small aubergines, cut into chunks
200g cherry tomatoes 
250g ready cooked puy lentils
500ml vegetable stock 
100g crème fraîche or yoghurt
1 tsp urfa chilli flakes
2 tsp fresh coriander, roughly chopped
Salt & black pepper

1. Put 2 tablespoons of oil into a large, high-sided sauté pan and place on a medium high heat. Add the garlic, onion, thyme and ¼ teaspoon of salt and fry for 8 minutes, stirring often, until soft and golden. Tip into a bowl, leaving the oil behind. Set aside.

2. Place the aubergines and tomatoes in a bowl and season with ¼ teaspoon of salt and plenty of pepper. Add the remaining oil to the same pan (don’t worry about wiping it clean) and, once very hot, add the aubergines and tomatoes. Fry for 10 minutes, on medium high, turning them often until the aubergine is soft and golden-brown and the tomatoes are beginning to blacken. Return the garlic and onion to the pan, then add the stock and ¾ teaspoon of salt. Bring to the boil. Lower the heat to medium and simmer gently for about 25 minutes, until the aubergines are soft but still retain a bite. Add in the lentils and stir through.

3. Serve warm, or at room temperature, with a dollop of crème fraîche, a drizzle of oil, urfa chilli flakes & coriander on top.

Recipe adapted from Ottolenghi.

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