Pick through the dried lentils, discarding any discolored pulses or “stones.” Rinse well under cold running water, then place in a large pot with 3 cups of well-salted water and the bay leaves.
Bring to a vigorous simmer, and then reduce heat and cook, covered for 15-20 minutes over low heat. Use a flat spoon to skim off any foam that rises to the top. You want the lentils to be al dente: keeping their “lucky” shape without turning into “lentil sludge.” Be mindful that they will continue to cook once you have drained them.
While the lentils are cooking, whisk together the tangerine zest and juice, red wine vinegar, olive oil, ginger, garlic, and about 2 tsps of salt.
Decant one-fourth of the dressing and set aside. When the lentils are cooked, drain them in a colander and then immediately mix them with three-quarters of the dressing. Discard the bay leaves.
Toss the lentils and dressing to combine and set aside, covered. The lentils will absorb the dressing as they cool.
Check the lentils and add the remaining dressing if needed and toss very lightly with the scallions and bell peppers. Scatter the chopped dill and serve.
This recipe works well with a variety of additions: poached chicken, grilled duck, shaved fennel, roasted carrots are just some suggestions.