|Mediterranean Lentil Salad
3/4 cup dried green lentils (you want to end up with 2 cups cooked)
2 cups water
3 oz canned/jar roasted bell peppers*, chopped
2 TBS finely minced onion
2 medium cloves garlic, pressed
1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
1/3 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
3 TBS balsamic vinegar
1 TBS fresh lemon juice
2 TBS + 2 TBS extra virgin olive oil
salt and cracked black pepper to taste
1 bunch young dandelion leaves or arugula, chopped
* If you prefer, you can roast the bell peppers yourself
Wash lentils, remove any foreign matter, and drain.
Combine lentils and 2 cups lightly salted water in medium saucepan. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and cook at low temperature for about 20 minutes, or until lentils are cooked but still firm. Cook gently so lentils don't get mushy. When done, drain any excess water, and lightly rinse under cold water. Continue to drain excess water.
Mince onion and press garlic and let sit for 5 minutes to bring out their hidden health-promoting benefits.
Place lentils in a bowl and add peppers, onion, garlic, basil, walnuts, vinegar, and 2 TBS olive oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Marinate for at least 1 hour before serving.
Toss dandelion or arugula with 2 TBS olive oil, 1 TBS lemon juice, salt and pepper. Serve on plate with lentils. - Serves 4; Prep: 20 min; Cooking: 25 min; Chill: 1 hr
Notes: If you want to roast your bell peppers yourself, preheat broiler on low and place peppers on sheet pan on rack in middle of the oven. Roast peppers under broiler until blistered on all sides. Do not coat with oil as peppers roast very well when dry. Place in a bowl and cover for about 10 minutes. This will make it easier to peel. Peel and chop.
- The George Mateljan Foundation