Turkish Carrots and Lentils (Zeytinyagli Havuç)

Recipe from Anissa Helou

This recipe tastes even better as leftovers, or after sitting a bit (if possible).


3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 ½ cups thinly sliced onion
1 garlic clove, minced
1 tablespoon tomato paste
½ teaspoon ground Aleppo pepper
1 pound carrots, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced (about 3 cups)
¾ teaspoon sea salt, divided
3 cups water
1 cup uncooked dried green lentils
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
¼ cup Greek-style yogurt
Fresh dill sprigs (optional)


Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion; cook 9 minutes or until lightly browned, stirring occasionally. Add garlic; cook 1 minute. Stir in tomato paste and Aleppo pepper; cook 30 seconds. Stir in carrots and 1/4 teaspoon salt; cook 1 minute. Remove from heat.

Combine 3 cups water and lentils in a large saucepan, and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 30 minutes. Uncover, increase heat to medium-high, and stir in onion mixture; cook at least two minutes or until liquid almost evaporates, but if you prefer softer carrots, cook longer until they reach your desired consistency. Stir in remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and freshly ground black pepper. Cover with a kitchen towel, and cool to room temperature. Serve with yogurt. Garnish with dill, if desired.