Mediterranean Lentil Salad (from Moosewood Restaurant Cooks at Home)
Serve this nutritious salad on a bed of lettuce, topped with feta cheese and olives and surrounded by tomato wedges and cucumber slices.
Total time: 30 minutes
1 cup brown or green lentils
4 cups water
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon fresh thyme,(½ teaspoon dried)
2 garlic cloves, peeled
⅓ cup sun-dried tomatoes (not packed in oil)
½ cup diced celery
½ cup diced red or yellow bell pepper
½ cup minced red onion
½ cup chopped fresh parsley
⅓ cup olive oil
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon ground fennel
1 rounded teaspoon Dijon mustard
salt and ground black pepper to taste
Rinse the lentils. In a medium saucepan, bring the lentils, water, bay leaves, thyme, and garlic to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for about 20 minutes, until tender, stirring occasionally.
While the lentils simmer, cover the sun-dried tomatoes with boiling water in a heatproof bowl and set aside. Combine the celery, peppers, onions, and parsley in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk the dressing ingredients until smooth. When the sun-dried tomatoes have softened, drain and mince them, and add to the vegetables.
Drain the lentils and discard the bay leaves. Remove the garlic, mash it, and mix it back into the lentils. Toss the lentils with the vegetables and dressing, and adjust the seasonings if necessary.
Serve immediately, or cover and chill to serve later.