As long as the heat wave in southwestern Ontario keeps going, the culinary themes in Lisa's Kitchen will continue to be: simple, simple and simple! For this reason, I decided to make an "azefa", a classic Ethiopian lentil and mustard seed salad that not only fits the bill for being simple but has an astonishing blend of earthy and pungent flavors that will strike anyone's attention, not to mention help them sweat out the heat. Unlike pre-prepared mustards whose flavor is diluted by time and packaging, fresh ground mustard seeds mixed with a little boiling water gives the spicy mustard dressing in azefa a fresh and powerful kick.
I've adapted my azefa from one given in Madhur Jaffrey's World Vegetarian, which has been for years now an indispensable resource to me for fast, simple, exotic and delicious vegetarian recipes. I substituted fresh jalapeño peppers from my garden for the 1/2 green bell pepper that she suggests and, of course, by ratcheting up the cayenne a little. If you want to tone down the heat, I'd recommend reducing the cayenne to a 1/8 or 1/4 teaspoon instead of sacrificing the hot peppers, which I've found to be an essential part of this and other azefa recipes. Similarly, the addition of a pint of grape tomatoes or one large diced tomato will help mellow the palate's reaction to the hot mustard dressing. One small chopped onion may be added as well.
|Ethiopian Lentil & Mustard Salad (Azefa)|
|Recipe by Lisa Turner|
Adapted from Madhur Jaffrey's World Vegetarian: More Than 650 Meatless Recipes from Around the World
Published on August 7, 2007
Simple, nourishing and zesty lentil salad with a tangy and spicy mustard dressing