- 1 large eggplant (about 2 pounds)
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons peanut oil
- 2 teaspoons cumin seeds
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 cup French green lentils (about 7 ounces)
- 2 1/2 cups water
- Kosher salt
- 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1/4 cup chopped mint
- 1/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Warm naan and plain yogurt, for serving
- Preheat the oven to 450°. Prick the eggplant all over, set it in a small baking dish and roast for about 40 minutes, turning once or twice, until very tender. Let cool.
- Meanwhile, in a large saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons of the oil until shimmering. Add the cumin seeds and crushed red pepper and stir over high heat just until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the garlic and cook until lightly browned, about 30 seconds. Stir in the lentils and water. Season lightly with salt and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer over low heat until the lentils are tender but not mushy and the liquid is absorbed, about 40 minutes. Transfer the lentils to a serving bowl.
- Scoop the flesh from the eggplant and chop it. Drain the eggplant in a fine sieve to remove any excess liquid. Add the eggplant to the lentils along with the lemon juice, mint, parsley and the remaining 1/4 cup of oil; season with salt and pepper. Serve warm or at room temperature with naan and yogurt.
The eggplant-lentil salad can be refrigerated overnight.