This is more or less what they make in Peru: I have just added the yoghurt. The red onion salad gives the lentils such a lift and is also very good served with grilled (broiled) foods. I love this after it has been marinating for a few hours, even overnight, and has taken on a special fuchsia tone.
Rinse the onions and drain in a fine sieve. Keep about a quarter on one side and put the rest in a bowl. Cover with cold water, sprinkle with the salt and leave for 30 minutes or so.
Heat 3 tablespoons of the oil in a saucepan. Add the handful of onion and the chopped garlic and sauté until golden. Add the tomato and season lightly with salt and pepper. Cook for 5–10 minutes until the tomato has melted and the water evaporated and you can see the oil actually frying. Remove from the heat and keep aside.
Rinse the lentils and pick out any hard odd bits. Put the lentils in a saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to the boil over high heat. Drain, then return to the saucepan. Add about
Drain and rinse the soaked onion in a fine sieve. Mix with the lemon juice and chilli and a splash of olive oil and season with salt and a little pepper. Arrange a pile of lentils, a pile of rice, a small pile of onion salad and a dollop of yoghurt on each plate — some people will eat them separately while others like to stir it all together on the plate.
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