150g puy lentils, well rinsed
Vegetable stock, or water, to cover
500g brussels sprouts, trimmed and any tired outer leaves removed
2 tbsp sunflower seeds
2 garlic cloves, peeled and sliced
2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
For the green sauce
2 large handfuls flat-leaf parsley, picked and finely chopped
1 small handful chives, finely chopped
2-3 salted anchovy fillets in oil, drained and finely chopped (optional)
1 tbsp capers, drained or rinsed, and chopped
2 tsp Dijon mustard
1 small garlic clove, peeled and finely grated
1 tbsp cider vinegar
3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra to loosen, if necessary
Sea salt and black pepper
Heat the oven to 220C (200C fan)/425F/gas 7. Put the rinsed lentils in a medium pan, cover with stock or water, and bring to a simmer over a high heat. Turn down the heat to medium and simmer for 18–25 minutes, until the lentils have softened but retain a little bite. Drain, then leave in the colander and let the steam evaporate.
Scatter the sprouts over a large baking tray, halving the larger ones as you go. Trickle over the olive oil, season generously and tumble everything together, then roast for 20–25 minutes, turning everything once or twice along the way. Scatter over the sliced garlic and sunflower seeds, turn again and roast for five to 10 minutes more, until the sprouts start to caramelise around the edges.
Meanwhile, make the sauce. Put the parsley, chives, anchovies (if using), capers, mustard, grated garlic and vinegar in a bowl, stir in the oil, then season to taste. The sauce should have a loose-ish consistency, a bit like a dressing, so add a splash more oil if it’s on the thick side. Fold two spoonful’s of the sauce through the warm lentils, taste and season accordingly.
Arrange the roast sprouts on a large, warmed platter, then spoon the lentils over the top. Finish with the remaining green sauce, a sprinkling of salt and a twist of pepper, and serve at once.
Recipe by Gill Mellar