Lemony lentils are completely delicious on sweet spice-roasted squash and apples.
Slideshow: Fantastic Lentils
6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
1 medium shallot, minced
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 cups French green lentils (14 ounces), rinsed
3 thyme sprigs
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons chopped chives, plus more for garnish
Freshly ground black pepper
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
2 medium acorn squash (3 pounds)—scrubbed, halved, seeded and cut into 1/2-inch-thick wedges
1 Golden Delicious apple—quartered, cored and sliced 1/4 inch thick
1/2 small head radicchio, leaves torn into small pieces
Parsley sprigs, for garnish
How to Make It
In a large saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Add the shallot and cook over moderate heat, stirring, until lightly golden, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, until fragrant, 2 minutes. Stir in the lentils, thyme and 3 cups of water and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer over low heat until the lentils are tender and all of the liquid has been absorbed, about 30 minutes. Discard the thyme sprigs. Transfer the lentils to a medium bowl and let cool slightly. Stir in the lemon juice, 2 tablespoons of chives and remaining 1/4 cup of olive oil; season with salt and pepper.
Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 400°. In a small bowl, whisk the butter with the cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves; season with salt and pepper.
In a large bowl, toss the squash with 5 tablespoons of the spiced butter and season with salt and pepper. Arrange the squash on 2 baking sheets and roast for 10 minutes. In the same bowl, toss the apple with the remaining 1 tablespoon of spiced butter. Turn the squash wedges and add the apples to the baking sheets. Roast for about 10 minutes longer, until the squash and apples are tender and golden.
Arrange the squash, apples and radicchio on a serving platter. Spoon the lentils on top and drizzle with olive oil. Garnish with parsley and chives and serve.
The squash and apples can be roasted up to 6 hours ahead and kept, covered, at room temperature. The lentils can be refrigerated overnight; bring to room temperature before serving.
Variation: For a different presentation, you can roast the squash halves and serve the salad mounded inside.
Starchy squash and lentils call for a full-bodied white wine, like Chenin Blanc. The fruit-forwardness of the wine helps it work with the dish. Try a Chenin from California that has been blended with a bit of Viognier.
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Review Body: This was delicious but how could it possibly feed 16? I cut the recipe in half and I'd say it would feed 4 moderate eaters. Perhaps it is designed to be a side salad? It made a lovely vegetarian dinner.