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Author Notes: Combining many of my favorite flavors and ingredients, this dish is great any time of year and pleases my husband who is doesn't normally favor middle-eastern flavors. There are many components to this recipe and each separate component can be made ahead and then reheated to eat with freshly made flatbread. On a rushed day, use purchased pita-type bread to serve instead. —Rebecca Fallihee | Eggplant & Olive
- 10 medium-sized beets, scrubbed and tops and bottoms removed
- 1 cup lentils
- 3 cups water
- 1/2 lemon, juiced
- 1 clove garlic, crushed
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- sea salt, to taste
- 4-6 flat breads or pitas (gluten-free if necessary)
- Fresh or dried dill, for garnish
- Fresh or dried rose petals, for garnish
- Halve or quarter beets. In a large piece of foil, wrap all of the beets and roast in an oven, preheated to 400 degrees F, for 45-60 minutes. Check part way through for doneness, by opening up the foil bundle and stabbing with a fork. The beets should be tender all the way through. When done, remove from the oven and let cool slightly. Then, slice them into smaller pieces.
- Bring lentils and water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Turn down to a simmer and cook for 20-30 minutes, until soft. Remove from the heat and stir in the remaining ingredients. Set aside.
- To serve, spread tahini cream onto the flatbread, top with lentils, sliced beets, and hazelnuts. Garnish with rose petals and dill.
Lemon-Tahini Cream + Spiced Hazelnuts
- 2 tablespoons tahini
- 1.5 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 2-4 tablespoons water (as needed)
- 1 small garlic clove, minced
- salt and ground black pepper, to taste
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 dash ground allspice
- 2 bay leaves
- 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 cup roasted hazelnuts, coarsley chopped
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- For the Lemon-Tahini Cream, puree the tahini, lemon juice, water, and garlic clove in a food processor. Add additional water or lemon juice to reach the desired taste and consistency. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- For the spiced nuts, heat oil over medium heat in a small sauté pan. Add spices and bay leaves and toast until the spices start to smell fragrant, about 4-5 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the hazelnuts and salt. Set aside.
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Jewish-Inspired Recipe
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Middle Eastern Recipe