For the Lentils:
Rinse and drain the lentils. In a large saucepan, add the lentils and four cups of water and bring to a boil. Skim and discard any foam and add the bay leaf. Cover and simmer for 30 minutes until tender. Remove from heat and drain.
Sauté the onions and nuts in the olive oil until the onions are tender, about five minutes. Then stir in the garlic, tomato paste, coriander, caraway seeds, cumin, cayenne, and salt. Continue to sauté for five minutes. Stir in the lemon juice to deglaze the pan. Let cool.
Pureé the lentils and onion mixture into a food processor and process until smooth. Pour into small ramekins or serving dishes and chill. Serve cold with pita toasts or fresh crudités. Garnish with parsley or fresh cilantro.
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