The juicy sweetness of golden raisins (or use sultanas: you can find them in the self-serve bins in supermarkets), with roasted tomatoes, sweet spices and a mustardy dressing, turns this into an exceptional dish. Serve with roasted chicken or lamb cutlets, or with other vegetables dishes.
¼ cup golden raisins
12 smallish vine tomatoes, halved
Flaky sea salt, freshly ground black pepper, caster sugar and extra virgin olive oil for roasting tomatoes
¾ cup Puy (or green) lentils
2¼ cups water
3 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 Tbsp lemon juice
1 Tbsp chopped shallots
½ tsp Dijon mustard
1tsp flaky sea salt
½ tsp ground coriander seeds
½ tsp ground cumin
Pinch of ground cinnamon
½ cup small basil leaves
1 Preheat oven to 210°C (410°F). Soak raisins in boiling water to cover for 30 minutes.
2 Put tomatoes in a shallow ovenproof dish lined with baking (parchment) paper. Season with a little salt and pepper and sprinkle with a fine dusting of caster (superfine granulated) sugar. Drizzle each tomato half with a few dots of oil. Bake for about 15 minutes, until lightly charred.
3 Put lentils in a smallish saucepan with water. Bring to the boil. Lower heat, partially cover pan with a lid and cook gently for about 20 minutes until nearly tender but still retaining some bite. Drain, rinse and drain again. Tip lentils onto paper towels and pat to remove excess water.
4 Drain raisins and pat dry with paper towels. Chop roughly. Blend extra virgin olive oil, lemon juice, shallots, mustard, flaky sea salt, coriander seeds, cumin and cinnamon together in a large bowl. Add drained raisins, then lentils. Toss well. Add roasted tomatoes, toss gently, scatter with basil leaves and serve.