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There's a reason oozing, soft-cooked eggs are arguably overused in food styling. That glistening ovum gold is like icing dripping down a cake, and anything underneath it is transformed into something richer, tastier, and more appealing. I would have been sold on this recipe from Diana Henry's new A Change of Appetite without that lusty addition, given my fondness for lentils in vinaigrette, but that broken yolk sealed the deal.
There are the tangy lentils and harissa-smeared tomatoes, and there's the dukka. Dukka is a traditional Egyptian spice blend using toasted nuts and seeds as its base, and endless variations exist, seemingly like fingerprints of the cooks who prepare it. Henry's is brash and irresistible, with hazelnuts, coriander, cumin, white peppercorns, and other heady seeds and spices. She takes those perfectly soft-boiled eggs and rolls them in the crunchy mix, like a one-upped scotch egg (her Britishness comes out in interesting ways).Though there are a few components, only the dukka takes some time and elbow grease; the rest comes together easily, and turns into a complex, incredibly satisfying bowlful.
Why I picked this recipe: So much stuff I love here: eggs, dressed lentils, harissa, dukka!
What worked: It all fell into place beautifully.
What didn't: No complaints.
Suggested tweaks: No tweaks, but the dukka recipe makes quite a lot, so you'll want to find other uses for it (which is a happy thing). It's often sprinkled over or mixed with olive oil as a dip for bread and vegetables. You can use it as a savory topping for yogurt, hummus, or fish, and I could see rolling a log of goat cheese in it to delicious effect. I had the leftover lentils and tomatoes with sautéed kale, a hunk of feta, and a generous amount of dukka for dinner the night after making this, and it was awesome. I'd love to hear how you use it, too!