This is an exceptional dish, and there’s so many ways you can work it by adding dukkah, pine nuts, fried eggs, pomegranate molasses – or the lot!
2 cups plain unsweetened yoghurt ¼ tsp garam masala Chilli flakes to sprinkle, optional Finely grated zest ½ lemon 1 cup brown or Puy lentils, rinsed in a sieve 200g cavolo nero Salt 4 Tbsp olive oil 1 medium onion, peeled and finely chopped 2 cloves garlic, peeled and finely chopped Salt Freshly ground black pepper to taste 2 Tbsp chopped mint 2 Tbsp chopped parsley 2 Tbsp chopped coriander (cilantro) 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil 2 Tbsp pine nuts Flaky sea salt 4 medium (size 6) free-range eggs, at room temperature 2 Tbsp dukkah Pomegranate molasses, optional
1 Rest a cake rack above a dish and lay a paper towel on top of the rack. Spoon yoghurt on paper, keeping it from the edges. Sprinkle yoghurt with garam masala, chilli flakes if using and grated lemon zest. Leave yoghurt to drain for 4 hours in a cool place or in the fridge. See here for more information Spiced Yoghurt
2 Put lentils in a saucepan, cover generously with cold water and bring to the boil. Cook gently for 20-30 minutes until tender. Drain.
3 Prepare cavolo nero by washing it well, then running a sharp knife down either side of the tough centre ribs (discard the ribs). Coarsely chop leafy part. Plunge cavolo nero into a saucepan of lightly salted boiling water and cook without a lid for 5 minutes. Drain. When cool, press out excess water and chop to break up and large clumps.
4 Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a medium frying pan over a medium heat, add onion and cook gently for about 10 minutes, stirring often, until tender. Stir in garlic and cook for 2-3 minutes, until onion is a lightly golden. Stir in lentils and cavolo nero and season with salt and pepper. Stir in herbs.
5 Heat extra virgin olive oil in a small frying pan (skillet) and add pine nuts. Cook briefly until golden, then transfer to a plate lined with paper towels and sprinkle with flaky sea salt. When everything is ready, spoon lentils into warmed bowls (reheat lentils if necessary). Use the paper to flop the yoghurt on top of itself enclosing the spices, then flop it out onto a plate. Scoop a decent blob of yoghurt on top of the lentils in the bowls.
6 If serving with eggs, heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large frying pan (skillet) over medium heat. Break eggs into a small jug. When the oil is hot, carefully pour in the eggs. Fry until done to your liking (my preference is set whites and runny yolks), spooning a little of the hot oil over the egg whites to help them puff up and cook. Dish eggs on top of lentils. Season with flaky sea salt and dukkah and scatter with pine nuts. Drizzle with pomegranate molasses and serve immediately.