These are specifically Mt Bryon Black Lentils which unfortunately are not the same as Beluga Black Lentils. When cooked these lentils will change colour to dark brown. One of the selling points are that they are quick to cook - the website and the packet will tell you that it is somewhere between 10 to 15 minutes but I found I needed at least 30 minutes to get them to al dente stage.
For the recipe I've taken the simple approach as I want to make the lentils the focus of the dish. Most legumes have an affinity with cured meat and for this dish, I've used speck - a smoked and cured pork product. The lentils are cooked in a mix of sautéed onion and speck and chicken stock before becoming a flavoursome topping for crostini.
Mt Byron Black Lentil and Speck Crostini[Enough for 8 crostini]
50 grams speck, cut into lardons
½ cup black lentils, rinsed
chicken stock (or vegetable)
sea salt and finely ground white pepper
toasted slices of baguette, for crostini
Sauté the speck until golden before adding the onion, reduce the heat and cook slowly until the onion has softened. Add the lentils, stir to mix through before adding enough stock to just cover the mixture. Simmer until the lentils have softened - you'll find that you'll need to top up the stock a couple times. Taste and season with sea salt and white pepper if desired.
Generously top the crostini with lentil mixture. These are best served hot or warm.
If you're wishing to add another layer of flavour, spread a little goat cheese on the crostini before topping with lentils.