This is one of those dishes that you can change endlessly based on what you have in your fridge. I tried to prettify it when plating it, but this tastes best when your stir it into one big mess -- while it won't look like much, each bite will be delicious, bringing different tastes to the forefront of your palate -- creamy sweet potato, earthy lentils, bitter greens, fresh mint, zingy orange, smooth Greek yogurt, tangy mustard, nutty tahini...
This will actually make 2 portions of the lentils and sweet potato so I ate one portion warm with the garnishes described in the recipe and tossed the remainder, at room temperature, into a mixed salad the next day for lunch.
1/4 cup lentils (I used Beluga lentils because I thought that they would look pretty against the mint and the sweet potato)
1 sweet potato, well scrubbed
1 cup finely chopped kale leaves, central stems removed first
1/3 cup thinly sliced radicchio
2 Tbsps chopped onion
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1 tsp + 2 tsps olive oil
2 tsps red wine vinegar
2 tsps Dijon mustard
1 Tbsp plain full-fat Greek yogurt
2 tsps Tahini
Juice from 1/2 a lemon
2 tsps chopped mint leaves
1 tsp chopped candied orange zest or grated orange zest (I had candied zest left from making spiced orange shrub which I repurposed, but regular grated zest is fine)
Salt to taste
Place one teaspoon of the olive oil in a small sauce pan along with the onions, garlic and a pinch of salt. Cook over medium heat, stirring for a minute of two, until the onion has started to soften and become translucent and the garlic is fragrant. Keep a close eye on this as garlic burns in a second.
Rinse and drain the lentils and add them to the pan along with a cup and a half of water. Lower the heat and partially cover the pan. Cook the lentils for twenty minutes, adding the kale and radicchio to the pan and stirring them into the lentils at the eighteen minute mark.
While the lentils are cooking, microwave the sweet potato for five minutes, turning at the halfway mark. Set aside until needed.
At twenty minutes, taste and see if the lentils are done or need a minute or two more. Each batch of lentils is different so it is hard to attribute an exact cooking time; you want tender lentils that hold their shape. As soon as they are done drain the lentil mixture very well and return to the pan in which they were cooked.
Add the vinegar, remaining oil and mustard to the pan and stir to combine. Check for seasoning and add salt if needed. Set aside.
To assemble, place half of the lentil mixture on a plate and top with half of the sweet potato, either sliced as above or cut into chunks. Top with the Greek yogurt and dollop the tahini mixed with the lemon juice here and there on the plate. I deliberately kept the tahini mixture very thick so that I would find little pockets of it here and there in the dish rather than the tahini taking over the whole dish. Sprinkle with mint and orange zest if using.